free website hit counter Spiced Tea & Letters: December 2005

Thursday, December 29, 2005

A Love Supreme

John Coltrane and Alice Coltrane
photography by Chuck Stewart

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Life and Afterlife In Benin

Photography by Okwui Enwezor

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

To the east.

Syreeta sung so graciously with Stevie Wonder back in the early 70s. She sung the lyrics, I can see the sun in late December. Well, I can't see the sun in New York City. Where is it? I want to feel the sun, I'd like turn into crimson and purple and orange, absorbing the rays as the sun sets. Maybe If I were in the Sahel I could once again feel the dry air graze my arms and back and through my hair; My feet wants to be planted on wet rocks on a beach. We need sand, saltwater and heat. I want to eat a plate of food that was cooked for hours in a pot by an old woman. I need space. It would be nice to have some city dweller smile at me or even kiss me. I looked for the sun today, but since there is a strike, the subway stations are closed and I couldn't climb up to the platform and see the sun and the emerging moon. They were hidden behind buildings. Everything is so flat; walking down the street I cannot see what's ahead of me or behind me, there are no mountains and hills like in San Francisco where you can feel on top of the world, depending where you are, Lombard street or Twin Peaks. I need to get to Mombasa and Zanzibar, quick.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Thursday, December 15, 2005


Have you ever been so tired you want to cry? This is how I feel right now. I am depleted of energy. Word up. Things have been going well for my photography. I have a solo show in Jan, I am exhibiting in a group show at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Washington, DC. I am awaiting a decision for two other shows I have submitted work to. I am also finishing up two essays for a two new anthologies. I've been working and trying to find a new job and apartment. Plus, I have a heart full of love and I've been looking for someone who wants to revel in it.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Evidence of Africa

I've been secrectly overwhelmed this week by a new discovery. I'm an African.

You think I'm kidding, but no. I am African-American, yes, obviously. Yes, African, but from where? I have traveled to the continent several times and each country I land in, I wonder, am I from this particular land?

I really wanted to know from where. Which languague did we speak? My Africaness was just a general notion, which didn't make me feel as secure. When Alex Haley traced his family back to the Gambia, I was envious.

My family isn't big on family trees and genealogy, so there's not many records of who were were. I felt bad. Especially when my friends could point on a map of Africa and say this is where my family is from. I also felt bad when friends of mine could atleast trace their family down to great great grands, or when heirlooms such as quilts and lockets were still in their possession. I felt like an isolated African being. Nothing to point to, nothing I could hold in my hands. Until now.

My discovery isn't anything tangible but it is evidence. It is something that made me feel whole .

I overheard my grandmother talking to my mother. Out of the blue, my grandmother says, you know what your great grandfather's name was? My mother says, no. My grandmother says, your great grandfather name was Kwaku! Then the doubles over with laughter. She comes up for a breath and says, isn't that an ugly name?

My mother says, it's an interesting name. Grandma says, I think it's an African name, Kwaku!

I just listen in amazement. Kwaku. Evidence of Africa. Kwaku is a name from Ghana, a real place. Kwaku means a male child was born on Wednesday. I had a grip on my identity. My notion of Africa, a huge landmass, had been narrowed down. My family might be from Ghana. There was peace in my mind for one moment.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Another Star