My Journey as a Poet (post #2)


(Part of Series:  My Journey as a Poet – click link below to see previous posts)

My first Published Poem:  “i be a bad dude”

After my little dust-up with the young man who was cussing at his parents I went home. When I waked into my apartment I felt like an emotional wreck. I felt wired and I felt intense. I plopped down on my little short sofa, picked up my leather bound portfolio that I used for writing and I wrote. In finished a poem in fifteen minutes. The title was “I Be A Bad Dude”. I was not writing a rant but I was pouring my intensity onto the page. I channeled my rage into rationale and i stated my case in between the lines of my poem. Here it is:

(Acknowledgement: this poem appeared in Catalyst Magazine in 1992)

i be a bad dude

i a bad dude
i real slick, smooth and rude

i cuss my mother
i shoot my father
slaps my sister
and spits on my brother

i a bad dude

when my women give me lip
i go upsides they head
and if they don’t shut they trap
they finds themselves dead

i a bad dude

i don’t work for no black man
i don’t work for no white man
i don’t feed no babies
i don’t make no monthly payments
i don’t go to school
and i don’t care about no rules
cause i’m fine, slick, crude and rude
i’s be chillin cause i’s a bad dude

Notes on Title Fighting



in the middle
of one serious

to my pursuit
of success as i
follow my dreams

i finally stopped crying
i finally stopped complaining
i finally stopped sleeping
i finally stopped stressing

must change my pace
in the ring
must step back
lay on the ropes
and let opposition swing

let opposition swing
while i cover my head
let opposition swing
while i take blows to muscle
let opposition swing
while i deflect with strong arms

let opposition swing
while i stay on the ropes

and wait…

for my day, my hour, my minute, my moment, my round


“Notes On Title Fighting” and many other poems can be read in “Good Morning New Year”

Reaching a Hilltop

i reached a hilltop today
during my journey
towards dreams realized
during my journey
towards dreams fulfilled

it was a place of reward
for all the hard work
of treading trails led
by visionaries, patriarchs,
and pioneers

it was a place of rest
for strained muscle
a place of escape
for stressed nerves

a relief for all the headaches
a solace for all the heartaches
a band for the breaks
and ice for the burns

it was a cool, calm place
where i wiped away my sweat
a room of silence
where i quieted my fears

a spot caressed by winds
where i soothed my tension
a place warmed by sunlight
where i dried my tears

as i gaze on past paths
i remember friends,
i remember family
some no longer here

i smile as i reflect
on those pleasant times
that helped me through the hard days
year after year

so i stand on this hilltop
and i peer ahead
surveying landscapes
planning paths for tomorrow

off to my next daring pursuit
off to my next phase
off to my next adventure
off to my next dream to fulfill

towards my next hilltop

i will follow

“Reaching a Hilltop” and many other poems can be read in “Good Morning New Year”


My Journey as a Poet

The Beginning of My Journey as a Poet – part 1

I took writing poetry seriously in the summer of 1992 and by early fall one of my poems, “I Be a Bad Dude” was published by Catalyst Literary magazine.

The writing and the preparation prior to receiving the acceptance letter marked the beginning of my journey as a poet. 

During that summer of ’92, I wrote and wrote and wrote poetry.  One of those summer nights I walked into my little apartment in the throes of rage.  I’d just finished confronting a young man who was disrespecting his parents by cussing in their presence and threatening violence towards them.  I intervened and we went to blows.  No one lost.  No one won but after we both rose up from the floor, he walked away just like a bully does when confronted.  

(to be continued next post..,)

“My Journey as a Poet” is the series I plan to blog about during this Summer’s posting season,