For the last decade, I’ve written for numerous websites and publications. I’ve been featured in The Root, Mass Appeal, Bitch Magazine, Brooklyn Bodega, Upworthy, Huffington Post, MadameNoire, Bustle, EDGE Magazine, WearYourVoiceMag, CRWN Magazine, and more. I write memoirs, essays, & reviews about love, education, Brooklyn’s gentrification, and hip-hop music.
BROOKLYN PERSONIFIED: YOUNG M.A TELLS “HERSTORY”
“This is how I imagine the current freshman class of my HBCU. Although we are years apart, the right song will still bring us to the yard or student center in droves. And if I were doing it all again, I’d throw myself onto the dance floor anytime I heard Young M.A. Young M.A takes me back home to Brooklyn. Her music is a continuation of my internal conflict about loving hip hop: misogynoir mixed with heavy 808s, and braggadocio-filled lyrics that make me forget it all. If I am ever yearning for Brooklyn, I immerse myself in Herstory, Young M.A’s seven-track EP.”
TEACHING BEYOND RESPECTABILITY POLITICS
“Jordan Edwards’ 3.5 GPA and Richard Collins’ Lieutenant status are strewn through headlines, before their tragedy. They read like justifications. They read like the reason for outrage, instead of the reprehensible act and murderers that took their lives. The uniforms of the men that are responsible for these deaths did not depict the monsters they truly are. Their badges and affiliations will save them, from the labels they so rightfully earned, unlike the garbs and insignia that meld into our skin. We are walking around with acronyms, graduation robes, and respectability politics that are drenched in deep shades of brown. Our complexion is the first thing anyone sees.”
FOR THOSE WHO ARE MULTITALENTED AND SUFFERING
“It’s a question that sprawls out of the pit of my stomach, claws its way to my ceiling, and spreads it’s wings at 3 am. It is a Robert Frost poem, carved into the tongue of onlookers. It’s a road that I have taken over and over again and still find myself thrusting it into my internal navigational system, trying to find my way back there.
There is no practice, no perfect, or focus that can stop this question. You can choose. It is possible. You can stand still in that choice and you’ll appear firm in your stance to onlookers. However, your entire inner being will waver. There will be a constant fluctuation happening in your mind and it will manifest, like madness: a midnight search for canvass, an impromptu performance on a train, offering to do things for free.”