You woke up this morning
The world turned upside down
Things ain't been the same
Since the Blues walked into town
But you're one in a million
You got that shotgun shine
(shame about it)
Born under a bad sign
With a blue moon in your eyehttps:/
A mirror's reflection can never tell you who you are. It's in the dark and deep silence that the voices of identity whisper their truths. Fear of the dark is more a fear of your true self which often resists the noise and the clamor of daylight. The journey between light and and dark takes you into the Self and away from the garish and false imagery that fools us about who we are, who we want to be. Darkness has its own blessings for those with the courage to brazen out the fear. Ultimately you bring gifts of awakening into the light.
I'm learning to write all over again. Bipolar disorder is no joke, the brain is a complicated, delicate beautiful organism and I miss the old me. But without the medication I might not be here at all. So I'm relearning myself and my art. I'm writing one sentence at a time rather than books or pages and it feels like mental constipation but all writing comes to life one word at a time and I've come come back to life one breath at a time. Breathing my art and living my words one heartbeat to the next.
The most wicked foe that I regularly battle is the fiend who tells me that my creativity is trivial, silly, and more worthy of silent distegard than sharing. I see every sentence that I write as a declaration of war against self censorship, against disease, against self destruction and I choose my facebook, my blog and my beloved private journals as the playgrounds of self expression, artisic reward and affirmation. Some of my spaces are public some are private but I'm practicing the risk of sharing publicly more and more because if a writer doesn't write then you're only a wish without the hope. These are my spaces of freedom, of retaliation against the mind's dark places; this is my field of words and joys.
Trump is about to revisit a form of racism on black folks with 19th century realness and our white brothers and sisters have decided that's perfectly okay. I'm over the delusion that Hillary can save us. Black and brown people are the sacrifical lambs of this election. We've been sold down the river again.
I don't know if I can adequately explain how fearful it is in any era to be black or brown. The fear of America is something we live with daily but in my lifetime I've never seen such a collective nervous breakdown of the white mind to compare to this. We have always had to fear white people and even with the election of President Obama we've seen him accomodate the baser natures of haters over the love and hope of black folks whom he took for granted with shocking ease. The price of this democratic experiment has always been at the expense of every black or brown soul in this country.
For a brief eight years the myth of the post racial era has been the delusion of white liberals to the rage of white conservatives. When George W. Bush won the second time I was in shock but that doesn't compare to the cold insidious nature of this election. This election was always Hillay's to lose and with four days to go it appears she's done it. I was never under illusion that she would be some gift to black folks because even Obama denied us the justice and compassion that was so needed to address the sins of the white fathers and brothers and sisters, but the horror I feel at the likely reign of President Trump is all encompassing.
The dirty secret of race in America is that black folk and brown folk and white folk have never trusted one another and the proof exists in the superficial fabric deep through to the very soul of this country.
I dont think anyone in my generation has ever seen this kind of rank and overt distuption to the point that a majority of Americans have decided not to even pretend to respect the polite eyes-averted semblance of mutual peace, that pretense of equality that we rely on to interact with one another.
If you don't speak out against atrocity then you implicitly support it; if you voted for Trump you explicitly support it. The only power that we have is the power of our voices and the screaming is set to begin. Holla if you hear me and don't stop. What do you have to lose he asked and the answer was always self evident; the least of the of those losses is that transparent film of (dis)trust because we know where we stand now if we never did: black folks were a subjugated people before and that's where some feel we belong.
The soul rides upon the wind like a whisper travels upon an echo's cloak. Unseen, its shadow reflects in a mirror like smoke, like fog, like invisible breath as immeaurable as the sky. The shadow that greets the dawn is raised upon the wings of the soul expressed by the language of love. The dawn is here, its luminescence and joy as infinte as the holy ghost thst is the heart.
Having experienced homelessness against all the odds of a wealthy upbringing there were many, many things that I needed to know in order to navigate the experience. Hopefully I can help others with what I've learned. Here's a list of vital things to know. Please share.
- Make sure that you are in possession of all identification documents. You'll need your birth certificate, state ID/driver's license, social security, and health insurance info. Make a packet of all documents and keep with you at all times.
- Before leaving home call your state's non emergency services line (usually something like 211, 311 or similar) find out all the service providers including shelters and food banks
- There's a lot of drama involved in finding shelters. Call your local shelter and find out what organization runs them, the length of stay allowed, accomodations and rules. Be very careful, despite being a literal beggar you may have to be exceedingly choosy. There are many shelters run by strict religious groups that essentially amount to cults and agreeing to their rules can lead to some frightening compromises and often there is no recourse if you are mistreated. If you have the option Salvation Army is an excellent resource, humane, clean, compassionate with very good services and accomodations.
- The sad fact that no one can tell you is that to be homeless you often may have to relocate to another city with better resources.
- Ask for help from friends and strangers. There is no doubt that when you fall into indigence many people will not answer calls for help and it is a profoundly humbling experience to ask for help. However you will also find that kindness comes from surprising quarters. There are times, quite frequently when you will feel abandoned but continue to work the system and take goodness with you in your heart. There are blessed breakthroughs to the light more often than you can imagine.
- Find out where you can stay to avoid being on the street if you can't find shelter. Libraries and hospitals are often the best options.
- Designate particular friends and family to keep in touch with for your safety. It's easy to disappear but never succumb to the temptation. You may not want certain people in your life to know where you are or what's happening to you but make sure someone close always knows where you are and what's going on.
- Work the resources. You may not be able to afford simple necessities like a phone but there is a federal free phone program affectionately called the Obama phone. They're easy to qualify for when you're indigent and literally a lifesaver. Assuming that there will not be a Trump presidency ( something I'm fearing) medicaid is readily available. You will need health insurance because many services that you'll need to access come through medical and behavioral centers.
- Particularly in the case of homeless women more than fifty percent suffer from physical and/or mental illness. The treatment services exist. Become your own best advocate by seeking help from community behavioral resources. Be diligent in following up on your health and wellness. It's the first major step to bringing yourself from poverty