Letter 1, dropped from my rocking chair.

Letter 1, dropped from my rocking chair.

 

The first letter dropped from my rocking chair.

(I sat in my rocking chair earlier and dropped everything I cared about into it. But I'm not picking them back up this time. Below was one of the letters I dropped.)

Lately, being an African American male has troubled me more - to the point of mental and physical exhaustion. It's quite a dilemma, because it's not as if I just became African American 5 minutes ago. But for many, many reasons, I've decided to pay more attention to how it's affecting me, my wife, and my son. And when my wife starts coming home complaining about these things, that's a major sign, because that woman NEVER complains. EVER.

When I was in graduate school, I was racially profiled by a cop who thought I was hiding cocaine in my car - my 1999 Ford Escort SE (WTF?). He asked me what my business was.

I said, “I’m leaving school at UTK, to come to NC to see my fiance’ for the weekend. He replied, “Well, we’ve had a lot of drug traffic down this i-40 corridor as of lately. Guys like to move drugs back and forth through these mountains, so we just want to make sure everyone’s being mindful (WTF?).” Could you please step out of the car and take a seat in my cruiser? My k-9 is going to bark at you, but don’t pay him any mind.”

 

Of course, I knew this was bullshit. But after Trayvon and so many others, who am I to get into it with this racist prick, in the middle of THE state where the KKK was formed. I digress.

Today, being an African American male in these United States is no easy matter. I've always known that to be true though. School just put blinders on me for a while. Since I've taken them off, I keep asking "God", 

“Why is the plight of our people so, so difficult? Why does it seem as if nothing ever changes? Up to this point, I’ve instructed other black men and women to keep fighting with your words and your actions. “Mount up.” “Work out your own salvation...”. Faith is the substance of this, that, and this...”. But now, I’m tired. Yes, I know MLK and Medgar Evers and Rosa Parks, and so many others arguably had tougher times. But I heard one of your own say, “Today, the devil is much harder to fight, because he’s killing people from the inside out. Someone that you see today, smiling in your face with the brightest and liveliest image, could be utterly dead on the inside.” 

 

Well, father, this is how your servant feels. This is what's happening to many of us. We're dying from the inside out. But the world can't know that because it gives them the firepower to put more needles in our arms, loans in our pockets, or broken pens in our book bags. Needless to say, I've run out of options. I've run all out of motivational speeches. Why do we have to suffer so, so much? What am I to tell my son? "Keep the fight son. It'll get better." I think some pastor fed me the same shit when my brother's father was beating on my mother. And that was 20 years ago. 

Wait. . . It just occurred to me that you need not explain anything to me if you don't choose to do so. And if you choose to tell me through one of your servants out here in our community, I know the message: Just hold on." Or, "Weeping may endure for a night." Or, "Trouble don't last always.". 

So, I digress. 

Just kidding. I actually had another thought...

A piece of folded paper. The outside says, "Genesis 1:26".

A piece of folded paper. The outside says, "Genesis 1:26".

Time and the rocking chair (a mini-story).

Time and the rocking chair (a mini-story).