to be African, to be Woman, to be Creative, to be Fashionable, to be Intelligible, to be be IMARA

imara by Mshana

This is the canvas and the pages on which I curate and display the life I wish to create for myself and other liminal hu-women like myself. I explore here my passion for fashion, present my literally inspired visual arts, write my visual arts inspired written works, share my linguistics, travel diaries, show my finding comfort in food, and heck, whatever else I feel like... Welcome and enjoy!

Searching for him

I prefer no pretexts to works of art but, “Searching for him” is a poem inspired by another poem called “Confessions” from one of my best friends’ anthology titled “21 one ways to love.” Though she never admitted it, the poem was written for me and other women in my position in hopes that one day we might have the courage to speak up and say our piece. Today, I say mine! In this poem, I also include directly quoted excerpts from Samantha Peterson’s “The Flesh & The Flesh & The Flesh” as performed in the Women of the World Poetry Slam Finals in 2015. I hope you enjoy it!

The truth is, after our fight last night, I don’t know if I am blinded by love or empowered by it to see through the thick layer of “MAN” you seem to be putting up. You seem to have me convinced that you, despite the hurt marks you leave on my body every night, are the one who left that heart mark on my heart, because my heart can’t seem to leave you…it just loves you. The best way it knows how! Even though, you are the one that makes me bleed blue blood instead of red, I am convinced you are simply the one. I am willing to block the sight of hindsight and simply think of who we could be even though really that is what we should have been since then when you said you love me.

You said you love me. So, you probably still do and I am willing to look for that man in you…If I can just find where you keep him, I will put this knife away. I would stop peeling through these layers of flesh and flesh and flesh to find him. If I can just find where you keep him, I would stop trying to find the flesh of him whose heart beats for me without beating me, without hurting me.  I promise I am simply looking for the man who loves me whole, all my dark chocolate self, my ebony thighs and my big black mouth that’s made to spit thunderstorm to clear the way for my gorgeous rainbow heart…

If I can just find where you keep him, I would stop peeling through your skin to find he who’s red blood and black heart pumps my name through his veins to refill the red love that I feel for him. He who wants to walk into my heart, lock the door behind him and never ever leave. He who does not tick all the things on my checklist but is willing to try…he is not Mr. Right but willing to become so he can take my breath away and make my heart beat for him…unable to live without him.

If I can just find where you keep him, I will stop searching for he who is comfortable seeing my wild contained and never wants to wake the sleeping mad black woman in me. If I can just find where you keep him, I would finally stop searching for the heart that longs for my presence and yearns for my warmth on the nights of cold December…I swear it will all be over if you show him to me.

Just show me he who loves me tirelessly even when it is the hardest thing to do. He who loves me enough to want me to be his one and only and more. If I can just find where you keep him, I swear I would put this knife away.

I am close to finding him, aren’t I? The fear in your eyes at the sight of me powerful, determined with a knife in hand tells me he exists. As your thick layer of “MAN” gets thinner and thinner I am sure he is there. So if you can just show me where you keep him, I will put this knife away…