Post 27, Write Here
#3amblackpoetry in July (August)
Post 27: Write Here
Post 27, 2020: Dichotomous Dictums
#3amblackpoetry in July? On August 1?! As I said in yesterday’s #3amblackpoetry in July post, a promise is a promise, and I promised myself I’d hit 30 posts and 30 days of writing activities in/for July. With this being 27, there are only 3 more left, and I’m not giving up just because publishing the remaining posts don’t align with Western, linear concepts of time. No matter how many instances I appear to comply, know that there is no external clock or calendar determining my destiny; I set, stop, and reset the stopwatch of my life. Now, call this cocky, call this bravado, or call it presumptuous, but I articulate this otherwise private belief because it mirrors my approach to writing, and reminds me of today’s prompt: “Write Here.”
I know that in previous posts I’ve urged and shared reminders to stop second-guessing oneself while in the middle of writing – or before even starting. But like the tips I share with other teachers and community organizers, I want to make sure I include not just the negative framing (don’t do this, stop doing this), but also the affirmative and action-centric framing (do this, try this, include this)? “Write here” is one solution or strategy of mine – and somewhat of a mantra. Where are you jotting your notes? They can be anywhere and everywhere, but they should be somewhere! Are you reacting to something or overflowing with some kind of sentiment? Is your cellphone with notes app handy so can you jot it down there, or can you compose an email draft? Yes, the brain is a powerful and often reliable place to store information, but somehow the fingertips are too!
However, I don’t just want to talk about process; I want to elaborate a little on the topic of content and idea generation. More specifically, I need you to stop erasing ideas and first sentences. I’m not saying don’t proofread or edit; what I am saying is that where something goes, how wide something reaches, and writing “The End” simply cannot happen without staying the course on an idea, word or sentence.
For inspiration, consider a piece I wrote called “Badly Boujee,” the link for which is included as part of today’s post. Badly Boujee is now also a SONG with beats and engineering by Mike Delick, and lyrics AND VOCALS by me! It all started with the song “Bad and Boujee” and realizing how much I loved the syncopated and staccato-style rapping the performers (Migos and Lil Uzi Vert) display on the track. I mean listening even today, I dig it! One day, during a writing challenge like this, I tapped into my feelings of admiration and decided to write a poem that was partial tribute and partial (respectful) mimicry – embracing the dichotomous dictums that freed me up to not second-guess the presence or source of my zeal (commercial rappers sharing the same type of lyrical content that raises concern for many, as far as women, proximity to crime, etc.). I had no intentions of actually making it a song, but that’s not my point. There wouldn’t be a song, or poem to turn into a song, if I hadn’t tapped into what was inside, and said, “let me go ahead with this idea, and just write here.”
Happy writing y’all!
Bad and Boujee
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