Sunday, February 15, 2009

Blonde Monkeys and Pretty Turkeys 12/13/08

Yeah so they couldn't do it. Imma a Boygirl again.

At the moment when day descends into dusk, the evening begins to rise into the sky and everything starts to glow. The light surrounds you. Halos appear around every object and man. The terracotta roads become bright orange and tangerine colored piles of dust. The medicine trees blow from side to side like giant horsetails stirring the wind and changing the shape of clouds. My skin turns into copper. Darker skin turns into sepias, mahoganies, and ebonies. The maroons and dark reds rise to the surface. Everything looks like it tastes as good as Amara Tabor Smith's desserts. Ripped tire treads on the road look like black snakes from the bush. The palm frawns on the tree I pass to walk home have been cut because they were hanging down too low on the road. (Kinda like when elders yank sagging pants up on the hips of the young brothas and tell them to stand up straight). The branches were becoming a nuissance and eyesore to everyone that tried to pass. I didn't mind bending down to get by, but somehow ... the palm was now in order and line with Ghana's vibration.

PhotobucketArtwork by Cece Carpio. (2006)

This is a special time. The death of a day and the birth of a night. Everyone says African sunsets are amazing, but it's so much more than that. Like the lightning storm last week that charged the air so full I jumped to my feet and began walking around the room while I was still dreaming. When I realized I was standing up, I laid back down .... And today, there was a rope tied to the top of the wall suspending a block of concrete in the air so that it didn't fall to the ground. I bet everyone knows what it's for and why it's there except me. lol ....

Me and the red/orange face and tail lizard had a funny ass run in the other day. I was coming around the corner and he was coming from underneath this deck thing at the same time. I screamed and jumped, he freaked out, ran towards me and like skiddered to the right. I started rollin' cuz I saw that he was as scared of me as I was of him. I found out that a red face and tail mean it's a full grown male. Orange means it's a male that's still growing. The males that are younger than that just have little orange speckles on their back. The females are green.

The bats would come next. Night falls. Then the grasshoppers wake up and shake music into the corn. I hear them on my latenight walks to the bath house where the not so small spider lives behind the plastic yellow containers stacked in the corner. She doesn't come out anymore, but I know she's there.

PhotobucketAdia at the W.E.B. Dubois Center. (Accra, Ghana 2008)

I visited the W.E.B. Dubois Center. It used to be his house when he lived in Ghana. His remains are in a room shaped like an octagon. I went in. The remains of his wife were there too. There is a spiderweb (W.E.B.) painted on the ceiling. I smiled. It was one of those moments when you know you're in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing. The tour guide explained the web to me just as I had in my first blog. I've been trying to understand how to build one (a spiderweb, a nation, in dance since I came here. I've been tying elastic to everything in my room. Navigating the construction of a spiderweb in time with tradition and rhythm is hard. Imma get it tho'. I just need a little more time. I asked for him and his wife's blessing.

Everyone's pinky finger is stained with black ink. Ghana will be voting again on December 28th because none of the parties got 50% + 1 of the vote. The NPP (New Partriotic Party) received 49.4. I got caught in the middle of a drag race between two drivers that supported opposing parties. (I was the passenger in the taxi of one of the drivers). It was the sideshow in Accra for about a good ten minutes. All behind who's car was stronger and who's party was stronger. I was hella mad at first, but then I just had to laugh. It's not like the same thing hasn't happened to me as a Frisco youth. At least this time I had on shoes. (Don't ask. It was during my transition from "R.B.L. Posse, 40 Ounces, and relaxers to Outkast, Digable Planets, and dreadlocks. I still bump the Chronic album when I clean the house tho'. Some things are just classic).

When I return to the family house (from the bath house), I have to move very carefully. It's dark. Akushia sleeps in the doorway of my room so that we can share the fan. I have to make it over her in one step. Akushia is one of Mr. Amoo's nieces and the daughter of the Amoo brother I call, "The American". He's a Ghanaian U.S. Citizen that lives in Portland, Oregon visiting home for the holidays. Remember Obroni is the carpenter. I call him "Strong Man", then there's Mr. Amoo, Artistic Director of the Ghana Dance Ensemble, "The Christian", I just met him the other day, (he's an older brother). There's a bunch more that I can't even imagine because the one's I've met are such STRONG personalities. Like MEN, MEN. Gruff and solid. Like if any of them was my daddy I would always be good type a dudes. Like if more black men in the U.S. were like them, we wouldn't have so many lost youngins in our communities. They are a testament to what happens when black fathers take care of their children. Oh, I also met the one that's the High Priest to the family shrine.

PhotobucketFamily. (Accra, Ghana 2008)

Akushia's hands do the work of an entire village in one day. She takes care of everyone and she's only twenty-one year old. Her birthday was two days ago. She bought herself some high heels and spent the rest of the day washing, ringing, and hanging clothes on the line. The day before yesterday I watched her pack the trunk of a car full of pots, pans, folding chairs, buckets, a cooler, and one rooster perfectly, then help push the car when it broke down on the way back to Accra from Kokobrite .... in a dress that was mostly white. Hair stayed snatched and the dress stayed clean. She used a white handkercheif to keep the sweat off. Can you say AFRIKA! That's why I be looking at my students crazy when they come with the whole, "Ey yo Miss... my Muva just got me new clothes and she said I can't sweat in them." I mean, I don't even be asking them to deal with livestock! You should've seen it, she just did that shit like an O.G. I don't remember what I was doing when I was twenty-one, but I fa sho' wasn't grabbin' up roosters and pushin' cars in Ghanaian rush hour traffic! lol. Bush Goddesses rock the hardest SUN!

Oh...And Hell no! I saw two monkeys yesterday in Kokobrite. Like right there. Hi, I'm walking down the road w/ Atsu .... and goats ... and people ... and cars.. and then, two blondish/white colored kinda sorta REAL live with no fence between me and them monkeys?! If they stood up they would've been like up to the top of my stomach. It could've definitetly been "When Animals Attack!" if I didn't make the right move. lol. I wasn't exactly sure of the proper monkey etiquette so I just kept it Barbara Whitaker's daughter a backed up respectfully. I was trying to look at them a little bit, but they were trying to look at me too, so I had to go. Monkeys are kinda deep. I felt their spirit animal power kind of strong. Yeah Imma have to think about monkeys somemore. I saw some Guinea fowl too, but ofcourse I just thought they were pretty turkeys. lol.

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