Using Texts to Kindle Reading and Relationships  

  Have a variety of books and materials that are immediately accessible for children to touch. Use them as a means to ignite inquiry and spark dialogue.     Kids are tactile. Having an array of resources within hands’ reach sparks their curiosity and instigates exploration, spawning the beginnings of inquiry and dialogue.  So I have…

Finding Fela: Music is the Weapon (Movie Review)

  Fela Kuti is a musical marauder, hallowed hedonist, and political phoenix, living a life rife with controversy, contradictions, chaos, conflict and curiosity. But between the beats and bruises we behold the brilliance and benevolence of a man.   In the biopic, Finding Fela, the finery and flaws of the iconic Afrobeat composer, multi-instrumentalist and activist…

Remembering Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou’s words inked paper with promise, grew their branches in our hearts blooming leaf/falling leaf/from our mouths. Recitation of her poems/loving, harmonizing, scouring us to return us from dawn to night, from promise to plight and strengthen us to forge forward, inward again. tmy   I needed to hear hear her words ring and…

NaPoWriMo 2014, In Tribute to My Sons

In tribute to my sons…poems inspired by NaPoWriMo, Day 4, written as lunes.   1) Green leaf fluttering, inviting Son’s hand to ponder     2) Browning leaf corpses, Siren song Entreat for last rites          3) Maceo’s Eyes The pierce/puncture of ancestors diving, tomorrow.  

“A Girl and a Gun”: Facts, Fictions and Fascination with Firearms

“A Girl and a Gun” instigates a discomfiting albeit necessary conversation about firearms, illuminating the fantasies, frights and fascination associated with them.  Filmmaker Cathryne Czubek gains access to the chambers (literally and figuratively) of women’s personal experiences with firearms, and with surgical precision unfolds their revelations.  Intersecting issues around gender, identity, history, politics, and culture,…

Making Memories Plate by Plate

Food is sacrament. Forkful by forkful, something old unfolds and something new begins to take its first breath. Food is sacrament. Through its creations and sharing, I am educated in how to give and bless back the family and friends that purpose my living. Family albums bloom with snapshots where we celebrate anniversaries, show thanks…

A Father’s Pen, A Daugther’s Lens: “Every Day is a Holiday” as a Narrative of Resilience

After his mother’s passing, a centenarian of wise years and generous heart, my cousin began renovating his Brooklyn childhood home. Pulling up well-lived carpets, he discovers the floor underneath protectively covered by newspapers from 1947, the year his parents purchased the brownstone. Resourcefully, he did not quickly discard the papers, fire hazard they may have…

Inside Gideon’s Army

Recently I had the privilege of being asked to view and blog about several documentaries showcased at the 2013 Montclair Film Festival.  The documentary Gideon’s Army  travels the gamut of public defenders’ resilience, resistance, remorse and redemption while serving others.  This synopsis/analysis is simultaneously published by the Montclair Film Festival website (http://montclairfilmfest.org/2013/05/inside-gideons-army/). Gideon’s Army follows the…

Predictions for Oscar Sunday by “keyfilmfan”

Guest Blogger “keyfilmfan” offers his predictions for this year’s 2013 Oscar nominations . . . First of all, I want to thank my wife for allowing me the opportunity to guest blog as she continues to rest after delivering our second child. She then added that I can talk about any topic I want. Any…

The Lone Crusaders of “Valhalla Rising” and “The Book of Eli”: Preternatural Archetypes and Iconic Rebels

This won’t be a review of these two films evaluating their merits and detractions.  More so, this blogpost is an investigative pondering, a thinking out loud about the power of movies serving as introspective lenses into ourselves.  After seeing “Valhalla Rising” a few days ago, it has not left my bones or cognitive preoccupation.  The…

Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman Redux: Are We a Nation Rhetorically at War with Itself?

What do we as a nation think of the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman case?   Here are recent posts from CNN’s website covering different aspects of the Trayvon Martin case.[1][2] you know: what a good scapegoat for blacks to point at and cry racism. P41: Caucasians are liars, murderers, thieves, rapists, sodomites, false witnesses, blasphemers, gluttons, idolaters,…

Looking into the Mirror of a Great Divide: How We Define Ourselves at the Expense of Others

In the recent blogpost titled “Black Canadian Like Me,” Alyson Renaldo suggests a contention between kindred of shared borders—Black Canadians and African Americans. She recycles the “Black on Black” crime of people of shared African Diasporic experience disliking and distancing themselves from each other, suggesting that cultural cluelessness, assimilation, and a “lack of reaching back”…

The Honor of a Father

Sitting at Crystal’s book signing last night was an amazing event. She was signing books for friends, family and invited guests, with wide smiles and loving arms to complement her words. What was touching was seeing this family event unfold. Guests bringing babies, Tonya bringing her daughter and daughter’s friend, several friends cheering and eating…