Monday, October 31, 2005

new objective

ran out of books. i have an incredible show at the battersea art centre. must get BOOKS. so - i've created a simple perfect bind UK edition book called Un-Lady-Like. thanks to the printers below my hostess' apartment.

so - i have books. only printing up a couple of hundred. and if you are nice, you can get one too - even though you walk with the swagger of an american! :)

Sunday, October 30, 2005

the signs

they are everywhere.

in german, in english

i made it to frankfurt. just to transfer an hour later to britan.

it was warmer than i expected.

i have a show tonite. a couple of workshops during the week.

then another show before i return home.

he is waiting for me.

she is waiting for me.

i miss them already

Thursday, October 27, 2005

married men edition (part II)

married men edition (part II)
i learned my lesson with the other one. started to check ring fingers like a whore checks pub's for lesions. i know. disgusting. but i was that determined. anyhow. i am performing moreso than before, because this was the time that the HBO started to inquire about the Punany Collective and being that I was in charge of publicity and promotions, we had a hectic schedule. anyway, i was busy - is the point. and performing ALOT. and it was during this time that a new drummer was assigned to the house band at my absolute favorite oakland open mic.

now the drummer before was an ass. bless his cheating heart. but this new drummer was really cute. with glasses and always a baseball hat. the difference between him and i was -- he was a classmate of my favorite aunt's. which was odd - cause he didn't look old. that said. i paid him no mind. thought he was adorable in a shy-type of way, but nothing more.

then one day, he tells me he has a crush on me. and the next thing i know - he wants to help me with my album. and im all down for that, considering free sounds good when it comes outta anyone's mouth. but i never let it get any further than that. hell, he was married and i wasn't going to hell for anybody.

weeks passed and he made it a ritual to come by the magazine office where i worked, and bring me a cup of hot chocolate. which was adorable. like him. still nothing on my part. i was as good as good could be. then he started calling me. which was fine. because we mainly talked about the album. then one day i paged him to say i wouldn't be in the office but we could me, at the office, at a later date.

maybe a day later, i get a page from his phone number. i return the call and his wife answers. now i've heard stories about his wife. taking advantage of his kind heart, marrying him so he could care for her two kids. all NONE of my business. so i greeted her like i would any other woman. with mutual respect. but she wasn't having that. she asked me what i wanted with her husband - and i told her (not that he had a crush on me) but that we were working on a project together. she then asked if there was anything else going on. i said no. she replied "well he wont be rendering his services to you anymore. so you can lose this number".

now im looking at the phone. and i lost it - momentarily. i replied "that has nothing to do with me. you need to talk to your husband." and i hung up. later i get a call from him and he's apologetic but also upset because she knows that he has been bringing me hot chocolate. i laughed. i didn't mean to. but im like - that's stupid. obviously, it wasn't. she arrived at my favorite spot that following tuesday, which also happened to be my birthday. obviously to scope out who the hell this hot chocolate stealing chick was!? and by this time, im upset. because its my birthday, i didnt do ANYTHING and im spoiled.

so after receiving an overwhelming number of birthday drinks, i wobble up on stage, pumps clicking the floor with purpose and i pose in front of the mic. he is sitting behind the drums and he looks at me sheepishly. before doing a special drum kick on that damn instrument. she is sitting in front of the men's bathroom which is also in adjacent to him.
her eyes are bulging and she's obviously heated. he still has his eyes on me. and i watch them both watch me for what seems like eternity.

then she does the inevitable. she rolls her eyes at me. like all her muscles had practiced the technique for 30 some odd years for just THIS occassion. i laugh. look at my table (which holds two of my aunts and my good friend) and i start the same poem that i wrote about mr adultery #1. this poem talks about him having a wife, it not my fault and what we can do regardless of her. it's a bad ass piece. definitely fantasy. but i rock it like a house breaking heffer and leave the crowd on their feet (it's oakland. they love raunchy ish - what can i say?). and to top it off. mr drummer man says YOU GO GIRL. THAT GIRL IS BAD. GOD BLESS HER GOD. and everything else to show his appreciation for the poem. while he slaps hi-fives across his wife's head and leans back in glee. she storms out.

obviously pissed. and i sit down. still high from the birthday drinks, but definitely feeling like i lost something in the exchange.

the next day i get a call from mr drummer. and he asks if he can come see me. says he has hot chocolate for me. i remind him what his wife said about his services, being rendered and all. he then invites me to the hot tubs (which is like a bath tub with luke warm water and benches covered in sweat and quicky stains). i decline. suggest he take his wife to the hot tubs. hang up the phone and head to the corner store for an extra large cup of my own hot chocolate.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

crazy day

books to be read and in my possession:

house on mango street (thanks marie - she turned me on to that one!)
addicted (esther talked me into this one too)
dread (just came in the mail...i think im love)
nappy edges (lik nostaglia for dat ass)
and autograph man...

oh yea. still reading ali smith's free love joint.

hosting tonite @ the nuyo

working between the chaotic spaces of my life

in a minute

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

not bad...

My blog is worth $5,645.40.
How much is your blog worth?

married man edition

the first married man i fell for looked like a GOD to me. his body held these muscles like tote bags and his dreads were perfect.

i didnt know he was married.

not when i let him stroke my breasts.

nibble my neck.

i thought i was lucky. finally out of a relationship with a man that hated anything positive about the direction of my career. he'd rather see me down and out with nothing and no one to call my own but HIM. but that's so far away from the topic at hand.

that said, here i sat under the glory of this gorgeous man. i was flattered. and open. and all the other things you feel when someone really beautiful finds interest in you. at first, it was in passing. we worked together, sorta. so i saw him during those hours only. which was night time club action as we acted as promoters for various record labels. it never crossed my mind that he was married.

didnt even notice the ring.

call it naivete. i was just 22. brand new to this dating thing. but after the first kiss. after the sexy phone calls. after the invitation to a hotel bed. i found out he was very married. like -- a newlywed. less than a year under his belt as a married man and he was already sweating fresh meat. i was shocked.

still enthralled - don't get me wrong.

but definitely shocked! i thought, maybe she tricked him? she didn't really want to get married but she's pregnant and he had to do the right thing. not that, that would be a reason - but i was smitten. and needed justification for my crush's ill behavior.

he replied with little to no breath between the words. "i love her to death. we've known each other forever. i guess i ain't ready to be married."

i was dumbfounded.

my heart dropped. i believed in karma. and with my heart recovering from the same heartbreak that he was about to administer to his wife - i bowed out. not so graceful, i admit. i found myself plastered one evening reading sex poems on stage with him in the crowd. and i imagined just him and i. and i didnt care who saw. i guess it was my release. my way of letting go - before i let anything else go further.

i just couldnt do that to her. i didnt even know her. but she was me. and i felt it. like my soul would shatter if i slept with him. if i continued lying to myself and allowing him to lie to her.

so when he called again. i wouldn't take his calls. when business arose and we had to work together - if i couldn't trade the shift with another promoter - i would leave no room for words. hands on flesh. temptation.

he introduced us in a chance meeting. it was awkard for us - but she was sweet. and as beautiful as i suspected. and more friendly than any woman i've ever met. we became friendly acquaintances. she deserved so much more.

i never told her what happened. i didnt know how to fix the words. i mean who would she believe? this woman -- or her husband? i didn't know how to fix something that i didn't break - atleast not willingly. and gave her the only thing that i knew how - peace of mind. i never spoke to him again.

Monday, October 24, 2005

jam on it

shows on friday @ montclair state university

and saturday @ sarah lawrence college

gotta prep for that ish... fa real

Saturday, October 22, 2005


we picked up amari's costume and more ingredients for the
turkey chili that i make from scratch. yes. me.

he likes it.

very odd, as i only cook fried fish, fried chicken and shrimp scampi

good to finally have another house favorite.

ugly rainy day. reminds me of london

will be back there next saturday.

just for a show with A&S.

then back home in time to promote for the new JAM ON IT: NOV 18th.


Friday, October 21, 2005


car brakes are dead

crystal senter brown's cd release is tonite

amari is running around singin' the steve wonder version of "happy birthday"

my day has just begun and its already 6pm

Thursday, October 20, 2005

things fall apart

sent flowers

the funeral is tomorrow.

i found a picture of him when we were so young

my grandmother is a soldier

she took a chance

told me about my other cousins

it makes me so sad. i can't think without wondering how the hell did we get this way.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

death is amongst us -- like a poem. but not.

so i finally talked to my grandmother.
and the story is fukn disgusting.
and so normal for young black men in my hometown,
to experience a death this brutal.

for jimani...

my cousin is dead. period.
his lifestyle was an occupational hazard.
it says so in the handbook.
unfortunately, there are no rules to follow
when telling his 5 kids that daddy is gone.

and how to we find the words to tell his eldest
son, that was shot as well during this shooting;
who watched his father's body fall filled with lead
and less breath than when he woke up that morning;
how do we tell them?

his wife is a widow.
his son will have to look in the mirror
and study the wound that presented itself
the same day his father departed.

his daughter's will walk wedding aisles without him.
they have red hair, a trait unrecognizable to our family
and adored by him. it was as if they had gold woven thru
their tresses. he is gone. no longer able to give them
piggy back rides. or rap them songs about his dreams
as an artist.

my cousin was an artist. he had the lyrical dexterity of
a great emcee. he was disguised as a hot boy.
caught between doing what everyone thought he
should do - and what he knew best.
he was taken from a family that loved him
before weddings and highschool graduations.
before weddings and grandkids.
before his time...
before this all made sense
before anyone could grab a handle on peace of mind.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


died two days ago. he was shot to death. he is the father of 5 kids. he was a budding rap artist disguised as a hot boy. he is my cousin.

young at heart, eh?

You Are 24 Years Old

Under 12: You are a kid at heart. You still have an optimistic life view - and you look at the world with awe.

13-19: You are a teenager at heart. You question authority and are still trying to find your place in this world.

20-29: You are a twentysomething at heart. You feel excited about what's to come... love, work, and new experiences.

30-39: You are a thirtysomething at heart. You've had a taste of success and true love, but you want more!

40+: You are a mature adult. You've been through most of the ups and downs of life already. Now you get to sit back and relax.

Monday, October 17, 2005

biggest misconceptions about Mo


that i'm some tough ass cookie that doesn't like the softer things in life. i love kisses, compliments, hugs, honesty, emails, books, music and friends.

that nothing fazes me. i'm actually really sensitive. and almost always nervous (especially before i perform on stage) and when i leave my daughter to perform.

that i don't accept help, suggestions or criticism well. i appreciate all of the above. i dont believe i am superwoman, and even when i play her (on occassion) i most certainly am open to all the help i can get.

meme time!

Finish these statements:

I wish somebody would...

Sex is best when...

I love to be...

I would smack you down if...

I'm so ashamed of...

I knew it was love when...

I'd be a better person if I...

Given one more chance, I'd...

I would melt if...

I'm at my best when...

my answers

I wish somebody would...give me a better house. or atleast the opportunity to live in a better house. so we could have a dog. and heat whenever we felt like it.

Sex is best love the person. and have some handcuffs, candle wax, ice water and the like to prove it.

I love to be...kissed. and i adore it when someone acts as enamored of me as i am of them.

I would smack you down if...harmed my child or tried to fuk with my life.

I'm so ashamed of...being so stubborn.

I knew it was love when...he said that was great! good job! and you are one of the smartest woman i know. he held out my chair. i think i fell in love everytime he did something so beautiful and unselfish.

I'd be a better person if I...could learn to forgive and let the small stuff just be the small stuff.

Given one more chance, I'd...tell my grandmother i loved her.

I would melt if...he asked me... move with him to Paris

I'm at my best when...i'm writing.


surfing the channels. and i found this new cable network called LOGO. its all about gay lifestyles. they have an animal series about homosexual behavior that animals practice - even when the opposite sex is present (i.e., baboons,).

im quite intrigued...

Sunday, October 16, 2005

i love this kid more than shoes, cooked food and writing. word

jive: this is how to look tough with the lollipop! carlos: spike lee says this is my best side brent: this is my calvin klein smolder...

i think there were 5 pizzas and 300 tokens...

Piper and Amari strike a pose

make a wish... "wish mommy to be famous" ... "wish mommy to be rich!"


yes, that's right. john lee and MELVIN VAN PEEPLES at AMARI's BIRTHDAY PARTY! chuck e cheese has no idea, who we BE! lol

this was before the kids arrived

she turned 8 years old yesterday :)

Thursday, October 13, 2005

margaret atwood, is the shyt... GASP - GULP - SIGH

We are hard on each other
and call it honesty,
choosing our jagged truths
with care and aiming them across
the neutral table.

The things we say are
true; it is our crooked
aims, our choices
turn them criminal.

Of course your lies
are more amusing:
you make them new each time.

Your truths, painful and boring
repeat themselves over & over
perhaps because you own
so few of them

A truth should exist,
it should not be used
like this. If I love you

is that a fact or a weapon?

virtual cheats - news clip & poll

Most love rats are now likely to cheat on their partners by email, according to the findings of a recent survey.

More than 70 per cent of respondents admitted to email flirting behind their partner's back, and online infidelity was the cause of break-up for one in 30 relationships.

and here is the poll that i took while reading it:

Are Online Relationships Cheating?
Have you ever had an online affair?

Yes 4314 51%
No 4186 49%

Can an online relationship be described as infidelity?
Not if you never meet the other person 3533 42%
Having any other relationship is a betrayal 2683 32%
Only if you shared very intimate details 2284 26%

Is sharing emotional intimacy as bad as a physical affair?
No, physical intimacy would hurt more 3340 39%
Yes, being emotionally intimate is worse 1241 15%
Both would be equally upsetting 3919 46%

What would you do if you knew your partner was flirting online?
Nothing, it wouldn’t mean anything to me 1786 21%
Tell them to stop, I’d find it unacceptable 2165 25%
Ask them why they felt like doing it 4549 54%

Would you be tempted to flirt with an old school flame online?
No, that would never interest me 1858 22%
Yes, I don’t see the harm in it 2806 33%
I might like to chat, nothing more 3836 45%

Are school reunion websites to blame for the increase in divorce?
No, people choose to be unfaithful 7061 83%
Yes, the sites encourage people to meet 1439 17%

one more day - london part 11

yesterday started off a bit slow. i was able to reach my london pal kimberely and we caught up on old times. she has an incredible book which i continue to use in my class. both of us homesick, we managed to make the phone connection work in our favor, trading american phrases and laughing at the politics (and groupies) of poetry.

later i prepared myself for the poetry cafe where i would be featured with a funny lady named aiofe and the publisher of sable magazine, khadija. ebele kept her promise and strolled in the room like the beauty that she is! full of smiles and hugs and warmth. anna also surprised us, as she is recovering from an operation on her foot - but the production of her new album made me smile, as i remembered thinking her voice as beautiful as a hummingbird.

the womens show last nite was fun

it went like this:

talking about men

talking about love

joking in the middle of the silence

having fun

drinking coffee and coca-cola

walking the covent garden

drooling over shoes

forgetting about men -- for small moments

laughing until we fell over each other

snapping pictures for the fun of flash

saying farewell like we may never run into each other again

boarding a bus to farringdon

catching the chinese food spot right before closing

last show: borders @ the ANGEL

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

a word from our sponsors

You and I both know there are people in the world who are
worth the effort - even if they are few and far between!

-- says Kim Trusty. an incredible writer, woman and poet. we shall take over the london square like whoa! shut up! lmao

london - part 10

brighton was cool.

had some pizza late nite
got to chill in sam's flat until
early morning.

we boarded the coach
i dont remember much after then.

i passed out so hard i think jive took a lead of things
to assure i wouldnt fall over.

i had a nice day off afterwards and
chilled out with sammy in green park

made it back to my hostess' flat
and watched all the movies that i could bear
including: sense and sensibility (dope)
elizabeth (dope) and (a favorite) love actually

decided to check emails and low and behold

between email altercations and ego clashing
ive finally found the sunlight breaking
thru this madness

i think i like this view much better

tonite i will participate in the
all womens reading loose muse
i am quite excited about that one!

it is in convent garden @ the poetry
cafe (yes, that's where they ganked me
for £4 water!) and the producer of the show
is also my lovely hostess!

that said.
gotta get back to the states

lil' girl to raise
shows to produce
books to finish
& classes to teach

can you smell what the MO is cooking?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

brighton: england

will run you the story later...

just know that i experienced my fist viewing of an irish canadian impersonation, alot of 2 pints and a walk out of this world with spiders as big as my fist.


arachnaphobically yours


ever notice

how the stories change to suit the narrator's opinion?

Monday, October 10, 2005

a walk thru london - part 8

to keep this up to date:

the manchester show was gangsta. good nite. great poets. good set. great sales. very happy with the evening...

back into london same night. slept the entire road - thankfully. woke up fairly early to catch a coffee and lite breakfast with my hostess and visiting San Antonionian Poet Beverley. we make our way to south bank, which is like NYC's Vilage.

we munch on chicken salad sandwiches, crawfish sandwiches and my favorite: prawns and mayonnaise sandwich - trust me. they sound much better than the name! lol

after watching the skateboarder swirl around the graffiti dizzingly, we make our way closer to the london eye. its beautiful. it is. so many people are out today, as its one of london's warmest days... kids are everywhere. strollers line restaurant walls and we have the perfect timing for vieweing a circus cyclist juggle basketballs for laughs, entertainment and a couple of pounds.

afterwards, its time for me to make it back to the flat, as jive and i have a 5 pm soundcheck. the location of the albany theatre and crazy far, so it will take us a good 1hr to get there.

somehow, i get caught up waiting for a bus that never comes - damn 341 - so i take matters into my own hands. i run, a hobble-like run, to the tube, pay for an all day pass (to make transfers, of course) then i return to the bus stop to catch the 171 to bus 19 which drops me off right in front of the house. i make it up the 91 flights, wash up, change and take out the braids (they were itching the hell outta me...). jive has a dilemma that involves shaving cream, a burnt out electrical clipper and some razors. we leave slightly behind schedule. but plan to make it up with an ingenous bus route that will drop us to the express train. slicing our travel time in half.

but if you know me. then you know we got lost under my navigational leadership. so late - that when we finally made it to the vicinity of the venue, we still had to take a cab to the theatre. show starts @ 730 - we get there @ 744. i suck

but the show was good. nice crowd. it filled it before my set in the second half. so it was nostalgic, as we opened the original production in 2003. i had friends from BBC and Soul Food - so the company was great. i was the only woman on the bill - and before the audience was able to hear my set - badgered the host for the delay in some estrogen on stage. i felt very wanted for the first time in a long time. :)

i had a shorter set than normal, because we were late. but i poured my heart out on that stage - so much so, the crowd's laughter and my light bantering walked us into a 4 minute overtime. stewart, the stage manager replied "bollacks! dont worry about the time! you did fantastically ms. mahogany browne"... that's the best thing about being london. you are always told the most beautifulliest things in these instances.

i sat in a seat by the wall, trying to sort out things in my head. i was still a lil' heavy from the hour long walk for the bus that made us so late. but the constant conversations that found me in this state made me focus on the importance of the evening. i signed books and cd's until i was on auto-pilot. i conversed with old friends and new friends. and i ignored the fatigue. the experience was worth it.

afterwards, we had to figure out if we wanted to chill at skorpio's crib as he was having a get together, or did we want to make our way back to central london before the tube closed (as it was sunday - and they close - no matter where they are @ midnight). we decided to make our way back to the flat, walked along the dark pathway with a poet from the States that now lives in the Queensland. for some reason, he reminds me of christian slater. his poetry is funny however, full of cock jokes and porn shop settings. i ask him where this stems from... he then tells me the best way to get over a heartbreak is to visit amsterdam for a specific amount of days. partake in a lot of drinking, selective drugs (his was magic mushrooms) and live sex shows (unless you were the type to visit the inside of those red light district workers). he said, it doesn't have to be a good experience. it just has to work. i dig his thought process. maybe not the hookers part - but i understand his line of genuis. word

we say our goodbyes to nii and the poet that loves family guy as much as i - before huggin marie. her and i will have lunch before i leave. and boogie and jive and i make it for the train. headed back to the flat. for recovery and those special double cheeseburgers that the kebab spot makes us miss home. again and again.

next stop: brighton

Saturday, October 08, 2005

bethnal green, carnaby street & the likes of london - part 7

vomit stinks. really

and you cant help but smell it swirling up your nostrils when walking down the street to attend the hip hop night at deal real records.

let me back up...

we woke late. i got back from the dental hospital with a new and improved root canal for an old and rundown tooth. nice for free. even nicer.

by the time we awoke, it was 6pm, we had to be at the venue for the spoken soul show @ 6pm, so needless to say we are running a bit late. ;)

take a cab to the spot which is somewhere around bethnal green. that's all we know from the flyer. we have to walk down a block or so before we even see the damn spot. did i say - there wasnt even an address on the flyer (or the time) but somehow we managed between jive navigating via london map and the cab drivers vast knowledge in the 1960 gangsters that once ruled the same streets we were in search of.

make it to the spot. have 20 minutes before starting time, when we realized we were starving. so we run to the kfc, grab a bag to go - eat upstairs the stage in the cafe and run down to a show already in progress. the attendance is small. but fills up towards the end of the show. we finish early enough and make our way to real deal records where the party has only begun for most londoners.

this area is NYC's 34th street. fashion and all. we take a turn down carnaby street, made famous by the beatles and hear the noise pouring out of deal real records small storefront. the bodies are mad thick and the space is entirely too small.

but we rep'n nyc tonite (ainsley, faro-z, boogie, jive and myself) so we roll thru, i see my peep's and house dj seth, so i get the directions to get on the mic and its on a popping. we get to close out the night, which is a good look. because by the look of things - the talent pool was quite shallow. one cat was freestylin about stabing someone's ovaries. too much of a bite off my man immortal technique, so im ready to boo ole boy. fa real.

afterwards, they have a cypher. before we split ways. jive and i are headed to central london, only a few stops away and the rest of the gang are headed to brixton. we will see them tomorrow morning, as we have to board the theatre van for a performance in manchester (different theatre & production).

jive and i walk up and down looking for a newsagent with bodega hours. no such luck. so we settle on a burger spot and order to 1/2 pound cheeseburgers and sodas. nice

next stop: manchester... yes again.

Friday, October 07, 2005

tooth heaven

you gotta love a country that will fix a poet's tooth
can u say root canal (good look'n guy hospital, londonbridge)
and send me on my way in time for a 7pm show?


Thursday, October 06, 2005

leeds and back down, part 6

we are in leeds
i have the most excruciating tooth ache

i think i slept about 3 hours total.
jive rescued me everytime i awoke
screeching in pain

im now immune to anebesol,
aleve, and iburprofen
nothing works

this sucks big time.

so anyway, im in leeds to perform
i was to meet the van that would transport us
from london to leeds.

i received directions to the meeting place
last nite
just to find out it was a mile from the mass transit

if you know me - you know i am still sporting this
damn ankle injury like a bad starter's jacket
so i hit back the organizer

asked for directions, nicely
and received minimal help
"take the bus"

no - get to the spot on this bus
in this direction
just take the bus - so now im seething

but by morning i get my bearings together
and head to brixton
just to be told the opposite directions

and by the time i make it to an internet cafe/call shop
the van has left
so im PISSED, obviously

head back to the tube, another bus,
another pound here and there. my tooth still
kicking in my eardrum like a freekn punk rock singer
minus the rhythm -

and i finally make it to wembley.
i spend almost 10 pounds on transferring,
phone calls, etc

so im really, really pissed
because this is exactly what i told the organizer
would happen

i get lost

but now im strolling on bad limbs - which means
im in PAIN while im lost -
not a good look for the kid

so thats why im here - pissing mad
in a media lab @ leeds
waiting for this freekn show to start

so i can go home and stick my head in a freezer

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

oxford, england part 4

last we spoke, i was pissed off.
turns out - it was a combination of things
coldness being a serious factor.

after typing out some hate mail,
jive and i made our way to town
with a hand drawn map from our favorite
brown lizard, steve larkin.

he's cool. he has this dance that he does on stage
so hilarious. his joints hits the off beats of the song
making him look quite the maniac. its diabolical

so we eat at kfc - 4 pounds
thank god. i have something in my stomach besides
the meds for my freekn toothache (which if you are
wondering is still very much hammering in my head).
after we are done, and still shivering, i talk jive
into seating at a cafe so i can down some coffee (s)

he agrees. we find door 72 which is real plush with
neo soul and wood everywhere. music is brilliant
(damn, ive been over here too long already) and i
take two americanos clean up with cream and crazy
sugar and jive nurses a peppermint tea.

i dont do peppermint. but we sit there, for a while
because we have atleast an hour and a half til the show
and we talk about everything. from the future of
jam on it -- to other things.

before we know it, its time to go - so i rush to the
restroom before we take that walk up the road (not block
though they are just the same in difference) and we step to it.

make it to the zodiac - its huge. they have just finished setting up
and things are looking nice. the crowd filters in
within the hour and people plop their nice dresses on the
dirty black floor (its a huge rave club - still nice, but the
floor, son?)and await the beginning of the evening.

we rock out. jive is damn near falling asleep.
hell i have enough espresso in my system to stay awake
for 10 more hours. im nice! we watch the slam, which turns
into something unusual. there was a cat that was actually
pretty good, and somehow he timed over? which i dont believe,
cause kats got up there with 2 minute disserations and still
didnt time out. so with that his 27.1 became a 26.1 and the winner
a sista (very nice i must add) rocks a poem that is definitely
subpar to the abovementioned and she walks away with a 28 something.

jive and i argue about affirmative action and i agree with him
on this one. unfortunately, i dont think she won on her merit -
but because they felt bad. "the only black woman," hell "black person
in a slam - so she must win". no matter. she was gracious, as well
as the dude that i thought should've won. and it was a good night overall.

afterwards, we rocked another set - which i cut totally short
cause it was a long night...dammit and jive closed the bil
before we headed to the kebab (prounounced KEY BABE) and steve,
the man of the oxford, picked up the tab like the gentleman he is.

we headed back to his crib (which is a damn MANSION. and im am
not exagerrating) which has so many rooms that we kept getting
lost. they also have a detached HUMAN size dollhouse built for
the owners doll house collection. ?? wha... exactly. they have a
which is generated by fire -- its crazy natural. ahem, or as natural
as natural can be in this situation.

they have hammocks and wood surrounding everything - very much a scary movie
setting. so jive and i knew to run separate ways if we heard the killer
in the bushes. cause you know what happens to the black couple in
the movies...

within the hour, we finish our kebabs and call a taxi before
hugging steve and saying farewell. we head to the coach station.
buses leave every hour and we wanted to make it back before our
host left for work the next morning. overall: gangsta nite. tiring
but gangsta, nonetheless.

next stop: london/brixton

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

manchester, part 3

no long posts.
this was an alright show
the venue was gorgeous
the audience was even doper

the hotel bed was fabulous
and i rocked out like i just didnt get off a coach
freezing and all...

otherwise, things are good
here in oxford.

that's right
another long coach ride
made it all the way thru birmingham
where i had a short layover

though some man tried to take my bag
claiming it was his - i said, NO.
he came back by grabbing my arm
before his elder companion was like, OH I FOUND IT


im in a pissy mood. maybe it's because i havent eaten since yesterday

or maybe its the secrets... who knows

Sunday, October 02, 2005

91 steps in Central London, part 3

this is how many steps i have to climb to get to my host's front door.
it is painful and breathless and invigorating at the same time.

last nite, we all went to the poetry cafe to check out the cellar. hosted
by our favorite irishman NIALL. it was a bit wet after a quick shower that afternoon
but otherwise, just brisk wind to remind us that winter was near.

we hopped the 38 bus and headed into tottenham court road to meet with our
host for coffee before the mic sign up sheet opened. the bus system they have in effect is hilarious. you jump on the open-ended entrance at the tail of the bus. and pay whenever the dude that takes the money remembers to ask you for it. he didnt ask us, so we saved a pound twenty. we ge to our meeting place (yup. starbucks) and after the much needed (and expensive 8 pounds including the nasty panini i ordered) white chocolate mocha (w/soya) we headed to the cafe. there was a bit of hustle and bustle - which is always a great sign for poets trying to sell there product.

NIALL already had his features set in stone, but allowed us free entry and a lengthy open mic slot. to show appreciation to the cafe (also because i walked into the bldg with my starbucks cup) i decided to patronize the bartender and order a glass of water. 1 pound. he replied - but you can get a whole bottle of water for 1 pound 75. im like - that's whassup. then he pops open the tap of the water and waits for me to fish my pockets for coins. when i give him 2 pounds. he laughs and says - i said 3 pounds 75. im stuck. i give him his stinking coins, take my change and head to the table holding jive and agnes in a huff. i sit there for atleast 20 minutes, mad that i got played for almost 4 pounds (which equates to about 8 american dollars) until i couldnt take it anymore and headed downstairs. jive kept saying take it back, as did agnes. but i couldnt do it. took it as a lesson learned and waited for the poetry to begin.

during the evening there was a heckler by the name of Luke Skywalker "something" -- he was a damn mess. yelling at people while they performed and then when the audience looked at him - he would gush "my apologies". i think agnes said she thought he had tourettes - but i knew it was a hoax. homeboy wanted attention. so when my name was called - he started again, and i had to stop and look him dead in his face like WHAT? (anyone from NYC or OAKLAND - hell, anybody with a violent bone in their body knows what that means). and he quieted down enough for me to finish my small set.

fast forward. he finally gets called to the stage - but not before he yells at the crowd, tells jokes that only he (and jive poetic) find funny, and upsets the host so much that NIALL gives him a refund, snatches the microphone and invites him to leave - immediately. now that was priceless.

afterwards we make our way back to central london, stomachs growling and full of laughter, we stop at a bodega (they call them newsagents) and i grab some chips, soda and beef jerky. another 5 pounds. we board a bus and wait our stop to arrive swiftly. unfortunately, the dude taking coins is on patrol. so i start checking my pockets for fare and realize i just spent the remainder of my coins on the snacks. jive purchased half of the soda and realized he as well was outta loot. they don't do change and here we are -- at the top of the double decker, stuck!

that's when agness yells "JIVE!" and we say, uh excuse me, or something another and jump down the stairs of the double decker to find agnes already on the sidewalk waiting for our exit. we laugh, because this is our second bus ride for free and head to the chinese restaurant to celebrate our hunger.

chinese restaurants are so much different here. in london, they seat you - even if it's well after midnite (which it was). in brooklyn. the plexiglass doors and bulletproof windows separate you from the chinese food workers. you have to order your food in numbers (gimme the number 2 or 2 wings and fried rice special for 2 bucks). in london, they make it fresh. we feasted on lo mein and prawns, special fried rice extra chicken and kung po prawns and prawns and black pepper sauce.
the food was considerably good - or we were just crazy hungry. the tab arrived and we shoveled out 10 pounds a piece.

so by the end of the night, i am upset with myself for spending all that money - but definitely happy with the company of food and friends. no matter, i will stay home the next day eating leftover chips and coffee.

next stop manchester

Saturday, October 01, 2005


hi, that would be me. :)

my start date is Oct 18th, once i return from overseas. if you want an invite to a hot night at the magical mecca of poetry (in NYC, of course) get at me on the email.

see ya soon.

london - shaw theatre - part 2

the night was a success. i sold out of books, drank coffee (though it not starbucks - thanks for trying Marie) and met a lot of beautiful people.

my set consisted of old favorites and a couple of new joints rarely seen in the states. when i come to the UK, i am daring. i feel like - you can try anything atleast once here. so i do. and its always an incredible response which prepares me for the states, i guess.

anyway - the rest of the night included:

Skorpio full of beatboxing and laughter.
boogieman - homie from nyc (by way of bklyn) is on the bill this year. he's one of the few male poets that can eloquently speak of love with senstivity pouring out of his soul (yes, cliche - but i so mean it).
zena edwards - this woman is ill with the instruments, fa real. she is always a treat to witness. she was on the very first bill back in 2003 (with jive, taalam, ainsley, jerry quickly and myself) and has way of making the room become a garden of sound.
urbanspirit - he is a new writer through flipped eye publishing and definitely a jokester. i think he had a joke to share every 2 minutes. which is a record! very nice, though i didnt get to peep his set. im sure he was fire.

and of course jive. who is exactly who is as - most of the time. pure fire.

marie my long lost london friend was in effect. mixing up the music quite nicely for the intro's and nii hosted with a felt cowboy hat. i reserve the right to clown him on a later date. the night was good though. next stop: poetry cafe