My description to the Irish Echo and the IAWAA

“medicine for the wounded”

Why did I write this work?

My stress and anxiety levels have been extreme enough for me to be at high risk for a stroke and heart-attack to occur at the same time, actually—and one of my uncles died from that happening at 45.   Instead, I had a grand mal seizure at 53.

In other words, my body went into restart mode. It wasn’t my first seizure, but I did not realize what it was until my mother (a retired nurse) told me over the phone while talking to her on the way to the hospital in an ambulance). Chronic or sudden illness is what systemic racism, sexism, classism, and heterosexism does to your body and mind—and if one is wounded enough, your spirit also suffers, eventually. The extended quarantine sharpened a multi-year experience of working in a hostile, toxic environment while attempting to surmount the almost impossible obstacles in front of me that kept me from advancing my career in academia.

This is not a shocking story–many Black women in academia overwork ourselves “just to get half,” as we hear so often now in pop culture, only we who are not famous enough or vicious enough to move up the ladder to become part of the machine are often not seen or heard even as we produce work that others who are more privileged and higher up the hierarchy steal or take to use for their own professional advancement and glory.  The persistence of patriarchy and racism even among allies, friends, and families speak to a greater need for empathy for each other and a need for clarity as to how to rebuild, reconnect, and heal for individual well-being and our collective well-being as a society.

Do check out my poetry and essays on my blog http://afrofuturismscholar.com

Dr. Craig Wynne, the newest professor in the English Program at UDC, will be the next guest on my podcast show At the Edge:  Think Culture.  We will talk about Dr. Wynne’s latest book “How to be a Happy Bachelor” (2020), where he discusses how to think critically about society’s perceptions of marriage, how to overcome your stigma and fear of being alone, and even how to respond to society’s judgments.  https://www.blogtalkradio.com/at-the-edge-thinkculture

https://www.blogtalkradio.com/at-the-edge-thinkculture/2020/11/21/dr-craig-wynne-the-language-of-singlehood

nine of swords (crowley)

almost got trapped
but got saved
by the whole of the law
by discernment of entombed verity
observations of the obvious
excruciations of the truth
how hustlers giving you dust
and liars taking your trust
mindfucking you
while calling you a whore
while lying to your face
while muting your voice in lace
haggish formation of recycled rebukes
trolling ensemble of bitch made brood
demons in an earnestly cacophonous furor
so mote it be on sight then
for there is no outside the truth

ancient antique armor armour

spiritual recharge

Regardless of your status or perceived status, if you are a Black woman, man, person, or child, you will be faced with systemic racism at some point in your lifetime—and at times frequently for no reason other than being there doing your job, sleeping,  working, playing, sitting still, walking, breathing.  That’s not including the work-related discrimination, microaggressions, getting healthcare while Black, driving while Black, education-related discrimination, and other biases lodged against you if you are a woman/girl, LGBTQIA+, disabled, international, etc.

Yes, systemic racism does negatively impact mental and physical health for African Americans, and we now live in an age where significant scientific, medical, sociological, and psychological research confirms that claim.  However, that begins another conversation on other related issues like high BP, diabetes, anxiety, depression, and PTSD.  Or think of it this way—I did not fall unconscious on the floor of a classroom during a faculty meeting last fall due to me being diabetic because I am not even close to becoming diabetic or pre-diabetic (and diabetes as a result of persistent stress/anxiety and poor diet is also rampant for Black folk).  My stress and anxiety levels have been extreme enough for me to be at high risk for a stroke and heart-attack to occur at the same time, actually—and one of my uncles died from that happening at 45.

Instead, I had a grand mal seizure at 53.  In other words, my body went into restart mode.  It wasn’t my first seizure, but I did not realize what it was until my Mom told me over the phone while talking to her on the way to the hospital in an ambulance).  Why did I have a seizure?  Because after almost 30 years of academia (grad school 10 years and 17 years from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor), the climate on my campus had become so consistently negative and toxic with almost no indication of improvement that my brain and body shut down and restarted.  Ever have your computer do that–shut down and restart in the middle of a project you hoped you saved before it shut down?  That’s what God did to help me reboot and heal, and luckily I only ended up losing some short-term memory.

Chronic or sudden illness is what systemic racism does to your body and mind—and if one is wounded enough, your spirit also suffers, eventually.

I am a feeling being, and I do find myself wondering how is it that  in order  to be considered even minimally acceptable in my chosen field, I had to sacrifice part of my humanity to successfully work in such a toxic environment for low pay and constant disrespect and belittlement.

Now, to be honest,  joy and passion and connection was missing before COVID-19, but the extended quarantine sharpened the pain of attempting to advance past the almost impossible obstacles in front of me that kept me from advancing my career in academia as a professor.  This is not a shocking story–many Black women in academia overwork ourselves “just to get half,” as we hear so often now in pop culture, only we who are not famous enough or vicious enough to move up the ladder to become part of the machine are often not seen or heard even as we produce work that others who are more privileged and higher up the hierarchy steal or take to use for their own professional advancement and glory.

My spirit is strong, and I want to live a full life, and that means reducing the stress in my life, as well as no longer swallowing pain in silence or allowing systemic racism and other systemic isms to continue to slash at me without me even saying “ouch.”  It also means pushing back with social justice moves and equity moves in my space and teaching others to do the same.   And me being me, it means writing lots of science fiction and spicy poetry in this blog space if for no other reason than to hold onto my voice and my humanity, as well as to hold my middle fingers in the faces of those who would rather render me silent than to hear me speak or sing.

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Fresh Tea on Me: pulling back the covers

and that involves pulling back the covers from all the wonderful goodies over the last 4-5 years i’ve shared with all of you, including photos, moments, words, poetry…..older stuff is now up along with newer stuff and updated stuff…..there’s some folk who may not understand what’s with all the activity, but there’s somebody lovelorn who’s been in need to jack off and i certainly don’t want to be labeled a cocktease…..after all, no matter how much work i put into my poetry or my fiction or my essays, i know there are men who come to my blog just to cum and that’s fascinating to me since dudes are always talking about me being a cold bitch but like to stare and walk around with visible hard-ons….2020 is one big group jack off session so grab some vaseline and a vibrator and get busy being human