Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Two Women, Two Stories...

The mind is an incredible thing.. Creativity is a blessing... Imagination is wild! Put it all together and you'll find yourself being visited by voices that come from somewhere and you embrace them. You let them speak and in turn, they share their lives.. Such is the case here as I share a little teaser of my upcoming works.. Two women from two different stories sharing a little taste of their experience...

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Zenobia Posted by Hello

Zenobia from "Until Again":
Everyday I looks at my child and wonder bout myself, bout Cudie, bout Eula Mae. I thinks to myself, will Atoya be truly better off? I had a little trouble giving birth to her and maybe it's cause I didn't want her to live while times be so bad for colored folk. She come out fighting. I hope that be a sign of her strength, though I can't tell right now. Most times she cry at night. It be just a little wimper, like she scared whenever it get dark. I hold her close to my heart and soon enough, she fall asleep.
I recall when Eula told me that our mother do the same thing with her. She say that as she lay in our mother's arms, close to her heart, she listen to the sound of it beating. It make her feel at ease and before she know it, she done slept all night cause the next time she open her eyes, the sun shining outside. That's what Eula told me. I does that with Atoya now, but some nights, I feel her jump like some noise wake her up. I never hears nothing.
I'd say "Atoya, what you hear, honey? Tell mama…"
She'd just look at me with her innocent eyes filled with fear, not knowing where she is. I wish I could hear what she thinking. I wish I could speak to her in some kind of way that tell her she be alright. Only thing I do is keep her close and love her. I do the things that I wished I could remember was done to me. Being a mama would feel so much better if I knew more bout my own instead of what Eula tell me. But I know my mama love me and she still watching. She can see my sadness. She can see what I constantly try to hide from others. She know and God knows that if I could, I would run and never, ever come back. But, I can't. I got to think about Atoya, first.
My child going on two years old, pretty soon. She say a few words and she walking already. She a gorgeous baby but unlike most, I look at her spirit and her heart. Most folk round here look at how light her skin be.
Those last few days before she was born, I prayed that her skin be dark as Cudie's or even darker if possible. I know she probably be treated better with her light skin but I figure if'n she dark then Mister David be angry and maybe he tell us to just leave his place. But as it turned out, Atoya come out lighter than me and Mister David just smile. He the happiest man, what ever seen a baby born.
He say "thank the lord, this child is white!" and he look around at everyone and laugh, especially at the slaves, standing nearby.
I knew then that I had to go. I had to leave the plantation and accept whatever be my fate. I prayed about it though I sometimes would feel like God ain't hear what I ask of him. So, I go with my baby in the back of Mister David's horse carriage. I hold Atoya close to me and watch as my new life begin and my old life become but a memory. Mister David take us to live with Mister Thompson and that's where we been now, ever since.
Mister Thompson hardly talk to me, except when he wants something done or comes home drunk. I always thought if I come here, I be treated kind but most of the time I feel like some dark secret. When he have guests over, they just stare at me and wonder. They don't see me out in the field and they don't see me working in the house so they wonders why I'm here. I get so sick when I see Mister Thompson, parade Atoya around like she his prize possession. And she just smile cause she so innocent and ain't learned yet how people really are.
Mister Thompson always call Atoya, Katherine and one time I got so upset behind it, I walk over to him and snatch her out of his arms. He look at me like I committed a sin. I later regretted it cause he had me beat. The skin on my back never been the same since then. I aint really been the same neither. I don't pray much any more. I just cry and I hate. Then I looks at Atoya and I try to be strong. I reach inside my soul and give her that part of me which stay hidden most times, now. I give her my love and I watch her smile.

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Leesha Posted by Hello

Leesha from "My Life Is All I Have."

Meeting family didn’t really excite me because even family be trippin and acting like you should kiss they ass. I only pretended to be excited because grammy seemed excited. For me, meeting new family just made me nervous.
Mama’s huffing and puffing in the background caused my conversation to end early with grammy. Mama had a way with getting what she wanted. It was a trick that I noticed most really selfish people do. They play the victim role and act like what they need is more important than a nation of starving children. Mama was good at that shit and when she saw me hang up the phone, she reached her hand out like I’m supposed to know what she meant. Actually, I did know but I put the phone down and went to my room. She could pick up the phone herself and I wasn’t about to sit and listen to her talk to Victor. I went to my room and slammed the door shut.
I turned on my radio and then plopped down on my bed. I felt strange for a moment, thinking about my surroundings. I looked out the window and focused my attention on the apartment across the street. There was nothing really to see and I wasn’t really looking hard. I just sat there, thinking and watching. I could hear mama through my door, on the phone. She was laughing. Victor makes her happy I guess. I can’t be like her when I’m on my own. She can’t live without having a man in her life and that’s really sad because the ones she chooses be so messed up.
I had to turn my radio up louder. I got tired of hearing mama’s voice. She was calling him sweetie pie and shit. That turned my stomach. I wanted to call Scottie and see if maybe he wanted to come with me to the party. Then I thought maybe grammy wouldn’t approve. That might put her in shock to see me bringing a guy to one of our family functions. It’s not like we have very many. Not any more, at least.
Grammy mentioned that there would be family coming to the party that I hadn’t seen in years. That made me wonder if my cousin Luther was coming. He’s real cool but crazy as hell. I used to look up to him when I was little. It would be a trip to see him now. Mama don’t like him because she says he’s a thug. She don’t date thugs. She’s only attracted to wimps and assholes like Victor.
Luther was a true thug. He was a serious gangbanger and definitely in it for life. He’d been in and out of jail, mostly for robbery or selling weed and violating his parole, but he ain’t never been caught for doing some of the things we’d hear about but didn’t know if it were true. Despite all that, Luther was a sweetheart and was all about family. I was his pride and joy when I was little and I’d see so much love in his eyes until I knew that no matter when or if I’d ever see him again, I knew he loved his little cousin Leesha.
Scottie kind of reminded me of Luther except that my cousin was a few years older. I had thoughts about the two meeting each other but then I figured it might not be cool because of a possible rivalry or something. You always had to be leery of someone’s affiliation in LA because everybody always belonged to something, even if it was just them claiming their neighborhood.
I slept on and off most of the night and it seemed like mama stayed on the phone forever. Every time I woke up I could hear her voice. I tossed and turned a lot and it wasn’t just because of mama. I kept thinking about the party and why it seemed so important to grammy. I started to think that maybe she was gonna tell everybody she moving away or maybe she’s sick. I would’ve died if I didn’t always know I could walk to grammy’s house to escape the jungle I live in. Having no alternative to mama was like being sentenced to twenty years to life. Your heart sees no other choice but to become numb ‘cause the rest of you be in total shock.

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Hope you enjoyed this little taste.. Be on the lookout for the main course when they hit the shelves everywhere! WarmBlessings...

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