Leaves of Grass

BrockaArt, Books, Music, PoliticsLeave a Comment

Leaves of grass: Individual pieces yet also a part of the bigger picture. Individual politics, yet a part of the same consequence. Individual perspectives, yet sharing the same space and time.

I’ve been reflecting on how the quantity of writing I do is not fairly balanced with how much I share, as far as the music goes. I have come to terms with the financial impracticalities of producing all the songs. So, over the last month I’ve been separating the prose into two categories: poems or music. Expressing the poetry is a free outlet, whether in front of a crowd or on my music site. I have added a link on my music site to Poems and will be posting and venturing down that rabbit hole shortly. No sense hopping over there just yet.

{sits with palms facing, twiddles fingers together in a contemplative poise} I have ideas.

I ventured out to a poetry reading this past Saturday at Wild Detectives in Dallas, to get a feel for this vibe, the attending crowd, who participates with what. And…per usual, I felt slightly out of place. I did network, thereby finding an evening crowd of a different caliber in a different part of the city, the whens and the wheres. I will go, but it has to feel right, too.


poetry readings at Wild Detectives

I’m not trying to sound pompous, but I feel like I’ve graduated from this. The coffee shop poetry reading thing was what I did as a teen. Now listening as an adult, it seemed more overwrought and weighted. This was also the hipster version of literary or professorial dinners on the Upper Westside of NYC. I left early.

Concurrently, I was listening to an oldie but goodie podcast interview with Rick Rubin, producer and founder of Columbia Records (the greatest music producer in the history of ever covering the broadest scope: rap-metal-yogic meditation-trance, etc…) with Russell Simmons of Def Jam. -via The New York Public Library (after mentioning snooty NYC vibes, irony not lost on me) These 2 guys were the nucleus, the central propelling force for hip-hop and rap. Back when R&B was evolving out of soul and funk, no record labels would go near what they were creating, and sure as hell, no bank would give a loan. They paved their own path. They opened up a whole genre of music. They made it sound approachable. Russell Simmons repeats throughout the interview ‘we let the artist breathe.’ Yes! And Rick Rubin kept reminding the audience that his main job has always been about being a great listener. SO many gems from this podcast. They both are fierce advocates of meditating, and Russell Simmons just put out a book on veganism. (just a side diddy)

Which words seem the best to the writer, dont often roll naturally when singing and one often has to find a rhyming word to match the syllables in rhythm. When one is speaking poetry, you can say whatever you like. It never has to rhyme or flow with any cadence. It is also why a lot of poetry can be unapproachable.

So the podcast and the live poetry reading also coincided with the Academy Awards, and its racially disparaging undertones. Obviously my perspective is minimal, as I do not compete in the Hollywood environment as a blonde female, much less a black man or a black female. But like Rick Rubin and Russell Simmons creating their own niche, why hasn’t a black man erected his own umbrella under which all these other marginalized black actors can work and perform? As Bollywood exist predominantly for Indians, as both Aziz Ansari and Mindy Kaling created their own shows, as writer-producer Shonda Rhimes has monopolized mainstream tv drama with her programs…

I’m not trying to trivialize it either, just making an observation.

Why do we make excuses, why do we project blame?? It is much easier. And if I can’t seem to find exactly where I fit, I need to just make my own space.

Reflecting back on our divergent politics and Leaves of Grass, surprisingly, Walt Whitman on Donald Trump

What hath the GOP wrought? We are to blame for the proliferation of Trump.


BrockaLeaves of Grass

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