For Louisville’s Lady Poetry, rhythmical composition is an art form with sometimes illusive or hidden meanings. Poetry is a way to connect to the inner soul of a person—to grasp their thought processes as they take you on a ride into their true self. In her words, “Poetry equals honesty and realness.” Therefore, she believes that a true poet cannot lie between the sheets of their journal. The following is her first-person journey…
My sixth grade teacher introduced me to poetry by challenging me to write a poem for the class every Wednesday. This challenge turned into a habit that lasted until I graduated from high school. The role that poetry plays in my life has changed throughout my twenty-five years. When reviewing writings from when I first started, I see how far I’ve come with arrangement and overall skill. Through the years, poetry has taken new meanings and gone from something I did out of boredom to something that I now focus on and constantly try to perfect.
In my youth, I was inspired by Jill Scott, Common, Erykah Badu, Mos Def, Langston Hughes and Nicki Giovanni to name a few. I remember watching Def Poetry Jam on HBO and saying, “I want to do that!” Today, I draw inspiration from life’s ups and downs, joys and pains, people I come across, and lessons learned. I am inspired anywhere. A single track or small conversation can spark a few lines that I jot down. From there, I develop the piece until I am satisfied. Music is always paired with my poetry because it inspires me the most. I am a pianist and singer, so some pieces are accompanied by vocals or written to original compositions.
I don’t classify my poetry. I use different forms of poetry to experiment and I find my truth within the forms. But if I had to choose a style, lately I have been more into a spoken word state of mind.
My trials and lessons in love and the relationships I have with different people influence my work. So mostly, I write about love and relationships. I use these subjects to tell stories with descriptions that allow listeners to feel my journey, and I strive to create a presence that makes an audience member feel as if I’m speaking directly to him or her and no one else.
I have performed at and visited places as Apache Café and Urban Grind in Atlanta; Nuyorican Poets Café in New York; Busboys and Poets in D.C.; and Dante’s Poetry Lounge in Los Angeles. From lounges to slams to clubs with regular poetry and spoken word nights, these cities have amazing talent and unlimited venues that support and facilitate the poetry/spoken word movement. With time and money, I believe Louisville can be an emerging force in the poetry scene. I have seen and heard great local talent and would love to see Louisville broaden its embrace to support the movement.
I am considering producing a collection of my work via a book or CD. I’d like this book or CD to feature poet friends and speak on the multiple paths of love—from the initial stages of infatuation and desire to the pain of hurt or obsession to positive as well as negative outcomes and futures.
I grew up with a supportive outlet. At present, the people who are closest to me are completely supportive. They share mutual feelings of love and respect for my craft. It’s important to me to become a role model so that younger boys and girls can have someone that champions and nurtures their talent and craft too.
To all the poets who are currently reading my words, never give up on your dreams. Pursue them with all the passion and strength you have. If you don’t believe in your craft, don’t expect others to. Be true to yourself because the pen and pad never judge.
I love you with all the words that escape from my lips
You have my tongue held hostage
I can’t even speak in rhyme without you being at mind
From the top of my head to the tip of my tongue
You are…what consumes my process of speech
Punctuations and words form sentences and lines that define my love for you
Because this is my way
I let the emotions and memories move me to this “you” inspired word play.
Well just don’t get me started because once I start overflowing the feelings…the words just come together so nice/ Working me into a trance of pure emotion/ Stroking your brain, appealing to your hot spots/ Painting orgasms on paper after the tip of my sharp fountain pen, dips into the pool of thought.
See how this love has got me?
Calling upon all my skill, vocab and jargon to express how much I love the way you speak
The way you walk
The way you frown during a sad song
And even when you smile when you think I am no longer watching
It would take me years and several volumes of books to convey everything I try to in just one look
I promise to give you everything you deserve
So I give you my most prized possession…
I give you my words.