Saturday, April 30, 2011

Why blog?

A friend last night said that questioning our motivations is important. It was in response to my response to his question on why I’m blogging.

He also agreed that it should be primarily for me and while developing a following was important it should happen and not be the driving force behind why I do it.

In part my blogging was inspired by repeated calls for more Caribbean voices to be online, too the freedom of an autonomous place for expression can be nice.

My raison d’etre is also fuelled by my like for writing, the belief that I have a point of view worth sharing and a way with words.

I recently read what can be termed two subversive books: Apocalypse by DH Lawrence and Theatre of the Oppressed by Augusto Boal.

They both are quite frank and critical in their analysis of life A.D.

I am marking my ten year anniversary of treating Clinical Depression this month…TMI? Maybe. The diagnosis at least gave a name to an unsettling disquiet in my being that does wane but at worst obscures my view of what I believe is a beautiful world.

Popular thinking says that life is fun, life is easy, dreams can come true and I am perfect. This has not been my experience.

I started believing I was carrying too much inside, despite years of therapy. In a search for truth I engage in psychoanalysis and talk therapy that allows me to voice the noise of my mind in a safe, neutral environment.

Scott Peck in The Road Less Travelled, like Lawrence says all man has come up with is temporary respite from the anguish of life in the form of yoga, biofeedback and other techniques. Peck’s opening line is “Life is difficult.”

Blogging in part is an attempt at easing the pain. Apart from being entertaining, provocative and honest among other things I aim to do like some other things in life, provide an opportunity to perhaps unite in thought with my reader and dare to believe I have a right to express myself even if what I produce does not align with the preferred order.

The double edged sword is that from what I’ve read there is no panacea for life’s pains and too there is consequence, so by baring my soul even if in metaphor it can have possible unwanted results, cynical yes I know.

Most of what I have read recently, though, says the troubled condition of modern man is inherently linked to the dominant institutions that we have built and sustain.

Bob Marley says “…total destruction the only solution…” 3Canal sing in their song Blue “…turn the whole world upside down…”. While I cant say I have such ambitions I must say I do find the sentiments inspiring.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Prayer of Saint Teresa of Jesus

Let nothing disturb you. Let nothing frighten you.
All things pass. God does not change.
Patience achieves everything.
Whoever has God lacks nothing. God alone suffices.

God has no body now on earth but yours; no hands but yours;
no feet but yours. Yours are the eyes thorugh which the
compassion of Christ must look out on the world. Yours are
the feet with which He is to go about doing good.

You are the hands with which He is to bless His people.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Taylor Made

Standards improve, including those of beauty. The progress in it is that it becomes more inclusive. It can be said to be universal only in that all societies have established ideas about what is beautiful. Therefore, the idea of a fixed sense of what is beautiful is true to all civilisations and societies. How it is rewarded is too sometimes the same.

The fact that we dont agree as a hemisphere, as a nation, as a race or whatever demographic and its resulting dialectic is what moves the idea of what is beautiful forward or around as it can prove to be cylical and trend driven.

What we must accept in discussing beauty is that disagreement and division serve a purpose. It is my view that it serves to advance ideas about what beauty is. There is irony in beauty, tragedy can even be beautiful. So can bounty and the finite. There is beauty in the extremes and in the moderate.

One of my favourite puns can be found in the statement "beauty lies in the eye of the beholder".


More important to me than form and convention is expression. While the former are important context and expression take thoughts and ideas out of isolation and so they become objects and not subjects.

Writing from where I sit/stand, though, is political on one level but too about my individuality and the uniqueness of my being. ALready bound by my human form, color, appearance, nationality and history: individual and collective I create on one level to create a place for myself and my work. This after reading a very good, beautiful poem by Christian Campbell, Bahamian. It was in an interview done by my very good friend Lisa Allen Agostini in the now online Caribbean Review of Books. Im outside of all of that as a writer I think.

Forcing. Forging. Its as basic as anticipation, I might as well be tha thing.


Sitting in the developed Atlantic Plaza having just had an ice cream with an all too subtle hint of banana, the named flavour. I know banana can be overpowering, scent wise particularly but that's part of its charm I think. It doesn't stink it can just be overwhelming. Moreso when over ripe but then think of how well they blend into a punch at that point with their sweetness and aroma at their height. Also good for breads when past ripe. The yellow skin now blackened. Its flesh being held together more by will than potential for growth, the skin gets thin and fragile and its more likely to attract flies, sour or otherwise. 'Waste not want not' leads to punches and breads.

I also just purchased my first Carol's Daughter hair products. Left to be seen if I develop a regime or how well they work. With my limited funds it felt good to make a "conscious buy", all or most of its ingredients are natural. Its also very Fubu. Trying to balance cause God knows its still a very multiple make up mine and I try to live in grace.

A place of so much

Republic was the first restaurant I knew of that did communal seating. I now sit at Flatbush Farm, in its garden. In a post 9/11 New York it represents the response of people to events beyond their control. Meaning, I can smoke with the reminder that sharing space aids in the development of community.

The menu boasts of locally grown ingredients. They all come from Upstate New York and the relatively neighbouring State of Pennsylvania. Its a statement on the eco-conscious thrust which encourages shorter travel distances for produce while supporting local farmers.

I am enclosed by a four storey high exposed red brick wall building partly covered by vines. Its an apartment building of which the establishment forms the ground floor. A fire escape acts as a metaphor for part of the reason I sit here. A friend once said to me she felt as if she escaped Trinidad. I break it up and it means in part the place was too hot, you can take that as you like.

Its approaching Fall in the City and at least the temperature is cooler. I think to myself, sitting alone I can do all the good I want and still feel bad. Doing all the bad I want doesn't make me feel good though. Its all I desire though. In this place of so much I want nothing more than to feel good before, during and after.