“They Called Me Tina Turner, again”

As a child
Kids tauntingly called me,
for reasons I could not see,
“Tina Turner”.
I balked at the comparison
That I could not understand
Was not my name.
I scoffed
Because I was just a child,
And not, however old the singer was then;
I hated it.
I hated it because
I couldn’t understand
What being black and beautiful
Even as a child meant
And yes, often
It meant gazes of judgment from foreign eyes
About who and what I was
It mean negative perceptions
But it also meant the good.
And now I appreciate my mother’s response
That the tears of this child could not fathom then.

“They called me Tina Turner, again”

And I was reminded that I had just been
an unintentional compliment;
Of comparison to one of the
Greatest of all time:
The astonishing gorgeous,
Who is
Tina Turner.

“Why not be proud?”


I want to know of my ancestors.
Yet the epic of colonialism,
Has for generations,
On multiple lines, kept faces, names, and ties
From kith and kin;
Kept us inextricably separated by imagined borders;
Separated with skins and flags of
fabricated colors;
Holding weapons and wealth
Unequal, unequitable,
As motive
For a status quo of harm,
Because just maybe one day
One of “us” will be on the “winning” team,
With change in pocket
And blood on hands;
Yet when in the moment of judgment
Will you be able to
Confess honestly
If any of it was worth it,
As we finally face our


At 7 we swore,
“BFFs forever!”
But then 7, became 8… and 9
And 9 ate both 8 and 7
And new friends,
new BFFs emerged

But for little ones,
Being loyal
There could only be 1
Not realizing that even 1 is
Never alone (0, 1),
Is always a 2,

and 2 is far more
Than it seems…

The numbers we swore by
are symbols
Powerful illusions
To capture
Our Something Timeless
Of our very real
(Even “imaginary”) numbers
Of BFFs.

❤️ ♾️

Parting Pennsylvania

We traveled the roads
Traced the Appalachian to the end of the trail,
Found flat land in Ohio,
And wondered if we saw the edge of forever.

Turned back around to where my family is found
The space I remembered,
With something missing.

Felt the drop of my heart floor once more,
Knowing she is only partway here
Though her spirit everywhere,
And with him still
–Papa, in his recliner
Watching the great-grand kids play,
I brew and bring him Coffee
Cream, no sugar,
Little offerings,
Of thanks,
For everything that is,
Everything we are.

As I reach back in generations
I feel closeness to the Divine,
To the source,
Tears are all I have,
To praise and comfort
For we are live, and we are mortal.
As the morning broached;
The heaviness settles to the bottom of my heart,
I am smiling,
With tears in eyes,
Never knowing the finality of each time we part,
Knowing love,
And that must be enough.

Awakening Showers

While in the hospital last year I experienced an awakening. As my treatment progressed, self-care was my primary concern (as a mom self-care is often neglected). I slowly became accustomed to caring for my own vessel as I might a new babe; therein it is fitting that patients here were given Johnson & Johnson’s baby wash to bathe.

In bathing, as I was cleansed with this scent of infancy, under a large rain-like shower head I was overcome by beauteous imagery. I could envision myself, as myself, and also of a diety carefully bathing, and from the soapy froth forming creation, light, and life; A goddess carefully combing her hair and the lose strands that fell becoming new beings, out of the coils- bits of divine DNA. How carefully she would need to care for herself, to keep all of existence in balance. Every move the being made, having an impact on heavenly bodies and their atmospheres, on the weather of the cosmos- all related to her own equilibrium.

I went to then mediate, and write on this. I felt a humbled and yet honored sense of connection as I had been gifted a vision that I might best be able to understand the powers that be, and how to grasp the importance and lesson of caring just as delicately for the life that is me. My heart swells with disbelief and amazement for the images bestowed upon me, which are beyond my normal scope of thinking. I am in awe of how such thoughts came to me, and of considering: why? I continue to wonder of this experience and recognize new meanings for my own being, and for others, for the earth, nature, all of which are in need of care, as even a mother deity would need, in order to keep the everything well cared for. I think of the advice on airplanes to put on one’s own oxygen mask first, and on the idea that “cleanliness is next to godliness”, — I appreciate that in letting myself accept the open arms in a hospital setting, and baring myself to the unknown, I Iet in a light that I had been warding off while not taking the same care with myself, as I had others, and thereby not leaving space for the divine to enter.