Posted in creative writing, creativity, culture, expression, Uncategorized

Where I’m From

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I come from a long line of beautiful women. Although it is true that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, my eyes have seen these women and know that they are the epitome.

Some of these women I know, others of them I have never met outside of my imagination or in the pages of a book or  magazine. With rich hues and spirits the color of the setting sun – I am entranced by each one.

I come from a long line of beautiful women who live the words that “life and death are in the power of the tongue”. From distant places they come to me whenever I am in need; I don’t even have to ask or plead. If I am feeling lonely , I feel their warmth, their love.

When I am going astray I hear their words of redirection and I can only reflect on the fact that I am glad someone prayed for me.

My mind, my body, my soul, are wrapped in the comfort of these beautiful women. I come from a long line of beautiful women but I realize that I must stay on the journey that makes me a part of their legacy – their empire …

… a beautiful woman.

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

Photo: Jackie Parvati “Bembe Do Mercado”

Posted in creativity, culture, expression, music

My Life: In Six Songs

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Recently, NPR proffered a bit of a challenge: “If you could tell your life story — chronologically, up to now — in six songs, what would they be?”

I was intrigued and so, I gave it a shot. This isn’t necessarily a story in the traditional sense but it takes a LOT of thought and creativity to represent your life in six measly songs!

I wouldn’t say that mine are necessarily lyrically literal but these songs capture the essence of my life up to now …

Southern Girl – Frankie Beverly

Got To Give It Up/Party – Marvin Gaye

I will Survive – Gloria Gaynor

Brown Skin – India Arie

A Change Is Gonna Come  – Sam Cooke

Crave – Gareth Asher

I would love to hear yours!

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com

Photo: WFMU

Posted in culture, expression, Uncategorized

Culture Commentary

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Ok. So I was really trying to un-see this tweet from last week but the more I tried to not think about it, the more I thought about it.

I’m hoping with all my heart that this person {late teens, female, non-POC} was just trying to get a rise or response or just acting out of boredom.

I’m hoping.

Since that post I’ve seen many, many other things that have given me pause and made me scratch my head a bit. I know that like religion, we should never ever ever ever bring up race in a discussion. It’s a “bad” word, right up there with the best swear words.

However, I remain troubled. From Madonna hashtagging a picture of her son using the N word, to some of the rather disgusting comments about Richard Sherman after the NFC Championship game because of his behavior, it seems like more than ever we NEED to talk about race.

I don’t pretend to be so naive as to think that this society will ever be kumbyah. Ever. But there are SO many stops on the journey prior to that place: knowledge sharing, conversation, question asking, understanding and respect to name a few.

Racism and other race issues are not simply a problem for POC but for ALL of us. If we never discuss it, then how do we move past it? If we never teach racial or social justice, how will people know to make a different or better choice before purposely harming someone {physically, emotionally, psychologically}.

Because as this young lady reminded; like so many learned behaviors, the act of racism is indeed a choice.

So let’s start by making some better choices. Even if no one knows but us that we made it, every better choice is a better choice.

Copyright © 2014 Tamika Brown and TheFynePrynt.com.

Posted in creative writing, culture, expression

Boots

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{in honor of those who have fought and continue to fight the good fight}

Boots on your feet
Boots on my neck
Oppressing my soul
Strangling my spirit
Forcing me to choke on words of freedom

‘Soon I will be done’ with the troubles of this world
Not because you so desperately want me to depart it
But because I choose to hold on and provide solace for my soul, encouragement for my spirit

No greater power can be possessed as having control
Of your own body
Your own mind
Your own self

Boots on your feet
Boots on my neck

But the POWER remains in me

©TamikaBrown ©TheFynePrynt
Stock Photo

Posted in culture, expression, headline, news, Uncategorized

This skin requires Courage, Hope, Love.

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Isn’t it always so amazing the things we experience each day, each moment? Today would have been the 123rd birthday of acclaimed author Zora Neale Hurston and of all her wonderful words, I was struck most by this quote from How It Feels To Be Colored Me:

“Sometimes, I feel discriminated against, but it does not make me angry. It merely astonishes me. How can any deny themselves the pleasure of my company? It’s beyond me.”

With all the talk of our “post-racial” society the tragedy is truly that too many things are happening to individuals daily based on nothing more than the color of their skin – both “positive” and negative. It is certainly true that not EVERY thing is racial but it is also true that the things that are racial should not be overlooked.

For instance their is jubilant news that SNL has hired it’s first African American female comedienne in 7 years. That’s great but in a post racial society should/would it be news? Is the ascension into one’s passions and attaining one’s dreams so rare for People of Color (POC) and specifically Women of Color (WOC)? Is it generally seen as a supernatural event for POC/WOC to reach this level?

I don’t have the answers and I’ll leave it here for now but in the meantime I salute every person who has the Courage, Hope and Love to truly live in their own skin!

Learn More. Love More.

Posted in culture, expression, music, Uncategorized

Leaving On A Jet Plane …

For some reason “Leaving On A Jet Plane” was on my mind this morning when I woke up. And by on my mind I of course mean that continuous loop of music that starts playing in your head and won’t stop.

{And in all transparency let me state that the very first song on loop was “Flawless” because of course, ” I woke up like dis”}

But alas, I digress. Perhaps because it’s the beginning of a New Year and there are always so many things we say we’re going to leave behind. So many things {people} we’re going to gather up then send packing.

Wouldn’t it be great if it could BE that simple?!!

But leaving the past behind isn’t really isn’t the way to go I think. The lessons we {hopefully} learn serve as our foundation, boosting us up and pushing us ever closer to our better selves.

So I’m going to go through my “past bags” and instead of sending them away to some place from which they might very well return someday — I’m going to unpack the lessons and get to learning.

Not just onward, but upward!