riot: a violent public disorder, specifically a tumultuous disturbance of the public peace by three or more persons assembled together and acting with a common intent The Merriam-Webster definition of "riot" brings to mind familiar headlines clamoring about shards of broken store windows, flames shooting out of vandalized houses, vicious swarms of malcontents pummeling police blockades with … Continue reading grace riot
Photo credit Like hundreds of people, I watched the animated movie Soul this past week, and also like many people, by the end of the film, I was in tears. Without giving any spoilers away, I can say that I couldn't think of a better movie to end 2020 on as I contemplate what this … Continue reading final quarantine meditation: my soul purpose
Hi All! I haven't done this before, but I wanted to share with you a spoken word poem I wrote for my church's service today. It's inspired by Daniel 7 in the Old Testament of the Bible which provides an apocalyptic vision that speaks to the empires of this world and how they threaten to … Continue reading the new kingdom
Dear Amadou, We've never met. You were born years before I even entered the world, though I learned only recently that we share the same birthday (next week actually). You have no idea how I reacted to that knowledge. Seeing your birthdate was like a searing validation of the unexplainable connection I feel with you. … Continue reading dear amadou
What do Elsa, a Japanese anime character, and the year 2020 have anything to do with each other? We all had so many expectations for 2020. It was supposed to be the year of "vision" (20/20 vision if you're a cheesy person like me). Many of us had dreams of career progression, travelling, pursuing new … Continue reading quarantine meditation four: into the unknown
There is always power when we confess our sins as a community, when we take the road of repentance together as we seek to be restorers of the world around us. O Lord, we come before your throne with broken hearts and weary spirits. We grieve the loved ones we have lost during this pandemic. We … Continue reading a confession for our times
I didn't know I was upset until I was halfway through the woods. I started my walk like I usually do, face mask wrapped tight over my mouth and nose, headphones pressed to my ears, the Chi-Lites my soundtrack as I jaunted towards the Wallenberg Forest. I pried the headphones off as I left the … Continue reading the questions you don’t ask
I woke up this morning and realized you were gone. I saw the Facebook posts and Instagram memorials, and as I read each one in bed, I felt myself beginning to shake. Yesterday was real. It was real when my friend Luz called me around 8 in the morning to deliver the news. It was … Continue reading quarantine meditation three: clinton
Celé Beauty closed down, and I almost didn't notice. I've made that walk down Heath Ave, past the elementary school, past the Target and onto the 225th Street train stop everyday for almost 5 years, yet it took me four days to see the "CLOSED" signs slapped onto the windows of the beauty store-now-turned-Footlocker. The … Continue reading quarantine meditation two: distancing
We are surrounded by numbers right now. We always have been, but now numbers carry a different kind of weight as I scan through statistical graphs of how many people have contracted COVID-19 around the world. My eyes follow projected curves rising, flattening, and numbers point to the losses we have already experienced and the future we desperately hope for.
I reflect on 5 years in NYC and the silences I'm thankful for.