Black & Kinky Amongst Brown Waves


when this month began…
September 19, 2017, 8:58 pm
Filed under: family, love, relationships, travel

when your sister/friend decides to not only marry a person, but a small island nation as well, you need to be there to witness and support the re/union. here are the 34 (easy!) steps that one might take to do just that…

1. get on a plane to SC to meet your sweetheart/ travel companion.

2. the next day, go with said sweetheart/ travel companion to the airport and fly to Haiti via Atlanta. 

3. look with wonder at the miracle of flight and the privilege to take a holiday… 

4. but try not to take yourselves too seriously.

5. walk through the Port au Prince airport with determination, but next time don’t be so determined that you walk past your brother-in-love waiting for you inside. 

6. start falling in love with the brightly painted taxis with too many people in them.

7. they sure are colorful.

8. look with wonder at the hills and all of the houses on those hills.

9. always more hills and more houses.

10. stand on the roof of your posh hotel to enjoy the view.

11.always more more hills and more more houses.

13. enjoy some of the street art in Petionville.

14. try to understand how so many things can be balanced in baskets and sold from one’s head.

15. enjoy the strong coffee…

16. and the ingenious to go cup.

17. find a green space to sit and marvel at the city. find out what the local equivalent of a dandelion looks and smells like.

19. drink fresh cherry juice at a local fast food chain. love it with all your heart.

20. make you way up the hill from Petionville to Kenscoff. marvel at how the drive up reminds you of the roads leading up to your grandparents’ house in Mavis Bank, Jamaica. be excited about your sister/friend’s celebration… photo by ada

21. but not too excited, because you have to put your fashion face to good use. photo by ada

photo by ada

23. make new friends and celebrate, despite the rain, and because of all the yummy tastes and musical sounds

24. the day after the beautiful reception, marvel at how the painted signs remind you of Ghana, so many miles away.

25.  enjoy more public art

26. drive with your new friend Isaac to la plague public (the public beach) because you can’t conceive of visiting an island and not enjoying the beach.

27.  see one of the many markets along the way.

28. enjoy your first glimpse of the sea.

29. notice that the lady in front only has one foot on the taxi and her cell phone in her hand. strive to be as cool and unbothered as her.

30. take stock that this is the first of the seven seas that you plan to visit together.

31. enjoy the rocky paradise.

32. juggle rocks like a champ.

33. love the Haitian flag a little bit more.

photo by isaac

34. give thanks for your sister/friend of 28 years that made this adventure possible. congratulations to the Philippe family. to love, because of love, and with love. Always and in all ways.

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a new poem – the flight
November 2, 2014, 10:17 am
Filed under: travel

i recently attended a conference in Tampa, FL and i’m always amazed at the inspiration i am able to tap into while traveling. movement has always been one of my muse…

 

the flight
© 2014 by margaux delotte-bennett

this morning I was reminded that
there is a way of putting down an armrest
that harkens to

slamming a door
hastily shutting a heavy curtain
drawing a line in the sand that
should not be crossed without
a readiness to meet the
challenge

she locked eyes with me
as she slowly pushed the arm rest into place

no blinking
no smile
just a glare and a clear indication
that there would be no
personable,
innocuous
chitchat
on this particular flight.



african musings…
June 13, 2014, 5:57 pm
Filed under: DC life, performance, travel, women

things have been a little quiet here on my blog… but actually quite active in my personal life.  I frequently think about posting here, but carving out the time to do so is often a challenge.

even so, my creative life has been very rich these days and here are some of the highlights:

in January i went to Ghana with a rag tag group of beautiful folks and i’m still processing the trip.  the poem and pictures shared at the bottom of this email are from that adventure.  i am currently reading Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’ Americanah and it helped me to finally finish this morning the poem that i started months ago…

my theater group, Wild Women Theatre, created a new piece for the 2014 Capital Fringe Festival and we are in the midst of a robust rehearsal process.  Letters To and From Me opens July 12th, 2014! We are also doing a fundraiser for the show and details for that campaign can be found here. I created the video, so make sure you check it out.

I completed the 30 poems in 30 days challenge in April, but I have not had the time to type up all that new poetry. It might need to wait until after our successful Fringe Festival run, but we shall see.

i hope that you are taking time and making space for your creative endeavors!

****************

Afreeka

© 2014 by margaux delotte-bennett

not unlike the sun blanched
vulture picked
remains of a Serengeti kill
there are parts of Ghana that look as ravaged
reminiscent of hollowed ribcages
upturned towards the sun
like fingers whittled from bone
praying silently for mercy

there are areas that puzzle the mind
remind the heart that there was once vitality here
but now
the eye only feasts on
scarred urban landscapes
bushes blooming with plastic bag flowers
struggle laden survival
etched on proud faces

even out on the plains
life is never taken passively
it must be tracked
stolen
bargained
so that the pack
can continue to flourish

colonialism produced excellent hunters and marksmen
the greener pastures of Africa
skinned for their bounty of gems
minerals
strong flesh
limitless cultural nourishment for the body and spirit

independence fought for and
pushed onto
handicapped nation states
power drunk politicians
laughing their way to the world bank
singular and plural

The land near to Accra’s beaches is dying.
Erosion due to structural neglect
waterways choked by raw sewage
saving landscapes is less important than
saving lives

but art is still produced
clothing designed
wood carved
children dancing in the dust
as goats wander past the
skins of their kin
laid out in clusters
being dried for
export quality drums

cast iron tubs filled with scotch bonnet peppers
weaving through Accra’s traffic
causes one to ponder if
peppers plentiful in Ghana
also made their way to the Caribbean
in the trans atlantic trade in flesh?

were seeds tucked into braids?
were peppers simply brought onboard
to spice the shipmates’ gruel?
is spice the reason we venture from home
in our longing
and in our lust?

questions and screams that are silenced
turn to stones in the mouth
weighing down
bashing the language of horror into
yes miss
no master
haloo, haloo, Halloo!

do not come here for rest.
do not come here for relaxation.
do not come here for service.
do not come here for peace.

Ghana is not here to give you anything.

She has given and given and given through the ages
and now wants to know
what is it
you bring

Ghana cultural performanceGhana fishing boatsGhana bananas



napowrimo challenge: 28 of 30
April 30, 2013, 9:53 pm
Filed under: travel

i always like playing around with poetic forms. this one is from Malaysia.

 

summertime pantoum
© 2013 by margaux delotte-bennett

in the summer of my dreams
I will be making my way to the beach
the ocean’s pull is hypnotic
I need the sand under my feet

I will be making my way to the beach
as a way to bare my soul to the sun
I need the sand under my feet
all of the natural elements in one

as a way to bare my soul to the sun
the surf and sand in perpetual motion
all of the natural elements in one
wind, earth, heat and water; a healing potion

the surf and sand in perpetual motion
the ocean’s pull is hypnotic
wind, earth, heat and water; a healing potion
in the summer of my dreams



napowrimo challenge: 8 of 30
April 8, 2013, 9:37 pm
Filed under: travel

this is a picture of a picture postcard i received from my friend rose. she included a lovely poem on the back and i was moved to write a poem of my own…

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rose’s pencil cactus
© 2013 by margaux delotte-bennett

when life is lived
under harsh circumstances
what is tender
must be protected

there is a place and purpose
in this life
for dagger-like thorns
that start out flexible
and then harden
to meet their match

and if artistry
can not be seen
simply through
this poetic act of endurance
each thorn will be dipped
in the setting sun
as a reminder to make
resistance
a thing of beauty.



poem of the week: quiet river woman
January 22, 2013, 10:24 pm
Filed under: travel, women

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quiet river woman
© 2013 by margaux delotte-bennett

not all rivers start below
some find their source on high
cascading down the side of a rock
not unlike her face

quiet river woman

keeps pace
with streams that fall
water gushing down paths created
by a current on the run
droplets tenderly lit by the sun
as it kisses the face of the breeze

quiet river woman

is pleased to know
that there is a cerebral stillness
a clarity of mind only achieved
when the sound of water
in motion
splashes through the spaces between
thought
and word
and deed

this very notion took seed as the
quiet river woman
soaked in the beauty
and felt freed



poem of the week: on the streets of Waikiki
September 5, 2012, 11:37 pm
Filed under: travel | Tags: , ,

photo by James Devine.  to see more photos in this series click here

 

while i was in hawaii in february, i was struck by the size and visibility of the homeless population there.  i started this poem while on the plane ride home, but i was not able to work on it until this past weekend.  having a friend currently on her honeymoon in hawaii reminded me that i needed to revisit this narrative. enjoy.

 

on the streets of Waikiki

© 2012 by margaux delotte-bennett

 

tarp and twine

bind more than my belongings

they allow me to be

bound

to this place

and time

stuck

though seldom locked

down

 

I sometimes fade

especially on days

when no one greets me

or meets my eyes

I guess the hunger

there is too real

 

I don’t ask for change

I don’t ask for time

I don’t ask

 

but what I want is as clear as the sea

around here

what I need is small enough

to fit into just one

of his six shopping bags

able to be found

inside just one of the many pockets

of her cargo pants

 

trying to hide my gaze would be futile

and why do I care about providing you comfort?

where is the comfort for me!

hell, yea I’m angry!

and tired

and hurting

in need of a place

where I too can drop my

baggage

without the fear that some joker

will find use for my stuff

 

it has taken me ages to gather

what I need to make it through

today

 

I make due

just like you.