Aim

Let it sink in

Like quick sand

On my hand

It’s a dream

Of a child of destiny

She’s searching

For the answer

Just a little child

Not much to mistake

With her sharp eyed

Pains and open disdain

For what’s evil and vain

If she shoots too soon

She’ll miss the target

She knows

Make the arrow

Sink to the center

Of the target’s heart

Take the dream

With both hands

Hold it fast

So it won’t collapse

Aim again

Only once

Square those shoulders

Make yourself bolder

Now shoot

And hear the target cry

Dreams achieved

In the blink of an eye

The child lives

The target dies

– Kelsey Jo

Fearless

The world is beautiful

and you are wonderful.

I see people shrinking

in towns–waiting; wasting.

To say it’s a judgement

to speak the truth

would confine the youth

from breaking loose.

So here’s some truth,

for the hopeless few:

The world is vast,

yet you know your past.

Frozen, afraid, and doubtful

you’ll last

You stay awake in your slumber

The years turning to numbers.

You know you waste

and yet make no haste.

Quick! Get out! Go!

You are your greatest foe.

Be strong–

No one else has your heart.

If you shrink now

who will do your part?

Drip

Sweat dropped down Her back as She inhaled the sweetness of a crowd of hundreds of people.

She knew the day would come and She knew She would be the result of such chaos and excitement.

Appreciation, celebration–for the evolution and brilliance in music.

A can of beer burst open spraying the small crowd in the center and aggressive laughter dominoed. Everyone turned to see a group of frat boys with red faces dripping in beer.

The crowd was

Massive.

Like walking through an explosion of people. The stage was the rocket and everyone wanted on.

She stood tall and pointed at the crowd speaking into the microphone welcoming the students, faculty, and staff.

Someone disrupted Her welcome with a yell and everyone turned to see a student standing in a tree. He danced around and some people laughed.

But the explosion was still happening, and the rocket would soon take off, so they turned their attention back to Her.

She started the countdown and they waited…

They didn’t know but She built that rocket ship…

And in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 the artists entered the stage and the show took off.

It was a moment to stop and appreciate the ones who take life and words and instruments and synchronicity and passion and pain and create…

MUSIC

A moment to celebrate the victory and loss of human life crafted together by a community of often underrepresented groups of people (the musicians, the artists, the lyricists, the songwriters, the creators, the hearts, the minds).

These people are the ones we build the rocket ships (stages) for and it’s them who take us to the stars.


“Music is a core human experience and generative processes reflect cognitive capabilities. Music is often functional because it is something that can promote human well-being by facilitating human contact, human meaning, and human imagination of possibilities, tying it to our social instincts. Cognitive systems also underlie musical performance and sensibilities. Music is one of those things that we do spontaneously, reflecting brain machinery linked to communicative functions, enlarged and diversified across a broad array of human activities. Music cuts across diverse cognitive capabilities and resources, including numeracy, language, and space perception. In the same way, music intersects with cultural boundaries, facilitating our “social self” by linking our shared experiences and intentions.

This draws us together and, as a social species, remains essential to us; a chorus of expression in being with others, that fundamental feature of our life and of our evolutionary ascent. Music is indeed, as Timothy Blanning noted, a grand “triumph” of the human condition, spanning across cultures to reach the greatest of heights in the pantheon of human expression, communication, and well-being. It is in everything (Cross, 1999; Huron, 2001).”

– Kelsey Jo

…Dedicated to The Man on The Stage…


The quoted statement above was taken from an article on the Frontiers Media SA website titled “The Evolution of Music and Human Social Capability”, written by Jay Schulkin and Greta B. Raglan (also both being the primary researchers).

Here is a link to the article:

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fnins.2014.00292/full

Legacy

He stared forward. Unbroken focus and serious eyes meant I had better listen.

UNFORGETABLE would be his next words.

The conversation felt more vital to my existence than air.

Become a legend and leave a legacy.

That’s all that consumed my thoughts at one point in my life.

Now restore swirled around, above, below, and within my heart.

What need I restore anyway? I didn’t know. I only knew something need to be brought back to a better state.

His question broke the air,

“Are you prepared to die for it?”

The question hung in the air like a bird soaring toward a tumultuous wave of water.

The bird broke through the water, grabbed its prey and soared forward–a majestic and graceful victory.

“Yes.”

I said slowly with a pounding heart.

His response caught me off guard,

“Okay. Good. I’m just making sure you know where you’re going.”

I know where I’m going.”

Embrace the discomfort, I thought.

Embrace it and let goD. 

“I look at these young men and women and I confess the tears trickle down my cheeks and I bow in humble praise to God that He kept me from walking away from a calling that at times was painful and frustrating.”

– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

untitled

She knew the package came from her and she knew what was inside.

She sat with furniture and suitcases tightly packed around her. The only space being her own little corner where she could easily shift in to gear and steer the wheel to her new home.

Admittedly, she wanted to tear open the package. Pour out its contents on to her lap. Read the letter she knew was waiting for her inside. Discover the unpredictable treasures of what she knew would be articles of clothing or trinkets found at some time of day, in some random place…All manifestations of thoughts and love that her friend still had for her. Gifts speak truth to the love harbored by the brokenhearted for the brokenhearted. The friend loved her unconditionally and she had chosen to let her go.

The way the manila envelope felt in her hands sent her heart in to her throat and the heaviness of nausea and stillness consumed her for a brief moment. Her blood felt cold and her heart seemed to be the only part of her still moving forward through time. She listened to it thud loudly against her chest and in an instant the package laid unopened on the floor. Without thought, her limbs did what they needed to bring the car to life.

She was behind the wheel driving the car, but someone else was breathing strength in to her limp body. She had become increasingly familiar with this fresh breathe of air over the past few weeks, each new breathe had grown larger than the one before. Once again, He came to her rescue. Right there in that moment. There He was.

He now steers my wheel.

And with that thought she pushed down on the gas. His peace warmed her blood, the nausea dissipated, and the car moved forward with a smile…

First Friday

First Friday of my life.

First Friday to end this lie.

First Friday to let God

take the prize.

First Friday without my strength.

First Friday

To know where I came.

First Friday of my life.

First Friday unafraid.

First Friday to surrender

my disgrace.

First Friday without what I will.

First Friday

To walk while He tells.

First Friday of my life.

First Friday, no more pain.

First Friday to kiss His face.

First Friday without broken faith.

First Friday

I’ll take what He gave.

– Kelsey Jo

Hidden Dome: The Soul of Durham

Anticipation leaked under cool blue skies

And feet crunched fallen leaves.

Roads whined sweet tunes of time

And age freed leaning trees.

What to make

Of this place not known;

This hidden dome—

Where nature says, “Move slow.”

People passing people with each step

And some stop to chatter.

Arms linking arms to keep warm

And some break for laughter.

Who are they?

These strange strangers?

The souls of this painted picture?

Destination reached under darkened skies

And mouths kissed mugs and glasses.

Taxis blurred through city lights

And chips lifted drunken masses.

What to make

Of this place not known;

This hidden dome—

Where evening says, “Let go.”

People passing people with each step

And some stop to chatter.

Arms linking arms to keep warm

And some break for laughter.

Who are they?

These strange strangers?

The souls of this painted picture?

————————————————————————–

I wrote the poem above as an ode to Durham, England where I once had the privilege to live. The moments I spent venturing through the city shops or jogging along River Wear made me feel I belonged among a carefully painted landscape—one of those the spy wants to protect in the movies. Not only does Durham lend truth to the idea of a tight knit community, but the community itself compromised of some of the most intelligent people from around the world (some being English locals).

During the day, students of all cultures and backgrounds would intermingle up and down the cobblestone streets. The level of anticipation they shared to take part in lectures, and countless hours spent in the library researching their various topics of study, infected the air and you would find yourself beginning to wonder what you’d been doing with your life! The pure beauty of lush green fields and colorful leaves reflected the glory of autumn in to the winding rivers. The worn stone buildings stood strong with rich ivy leaves curling around the window frames. The bridges carried its travelers from Durham Cathedral and Durham Castle to homes lining the curvy streets. Years and years of rain and wind blackened the bridges’ ledges and green moss peaked through their cement foundations—all to remind you of the first forward thinking minds who crossed the same rivers centuries ago; the first to commit to challenging the known and discovering the unknown.

During the weekend nights, locals grouped together in pubs, dance clubs, and fish & chip shops (to soak up the alcohol of course–which is why I say “chips lifted drunken masses”). Students huddled together on weekend nights to enjoy a couple of drinks as well. However, most students were spotted on weekday evenings around Durham’s City Centre. Wednesdays, for example, were considered “sports night.” The institution’s sport’s teams crowded in buses to compete in Badminton, Cricket, Fencing, Lacrosse, Hockey, and other common sports played throughout the U.K. Win or lose, the teams headed straight from their buses, courts, and fields to buy a pint (or five).

Begging the question, “Who are they? These strange strangers? The souls of this painted picture?” represented my quest to connect with strangers of a new country at that time in my life. My curiosity toward the differences marked by the students’ and locals’ upbringings, and how these differences contributed to the painting of Durham, England, posed more weight on the idea of “soul” then it ever had before. “Soul” took on a double ant antra. Like myself, all beings I encountered in Durham contained souls. They were full of life! Yet, all the souls found throughout the city today and once long ago, gave the city its own unforgettable identity. The souls created the soul of Durham City! Despite the beauty of the scenery and the history of the city, without the people there would not be a heart to the body of such a glorious place. Nor a painting for the spy to protect

Thank you for taking the time to stop by and read my adventures.

All Black Lives Matter

Some call me white girl;

Light skinned; mulatto.

Others aren’t so nice–they tell me,

“I’m wanna be black,

But don’t talk, don’t act.”

When I was younger,

My defense would go:

“My skin’s light, but my daddy’s black.

My brother is black.

My grandpa is too.

My knees get ashy.

My hair gets frizzy.

Behind me, you’ll find a booty.

And my black daddy

Gots baby mommies.”

Why is it these things

Defend my black pride?

Who gets to define true black life?

Black culture is real;

Exclusive; not white.

My mixed brother once

Told our white mommy,

“You aren’t my mom because you’re white.

I am full black so

How can I be white?”

Why did my brother

Feel white made him lack?

Was it because he’s called white boy;

Light skinned; not full black?

Shame–led his attack?

Or was it because

Of all the cracked jokes

Implying we act certain ways

If we wish to be

Part of the black race?

We all see the hurt,

So let’s break all fear

And recognize that skin

Shouldn’t define life

Or what is real.

Black lives matter!

Indeed, they do.

So why does our

Black life only matter,

When we’re as black

Or as white as you?

– Kelsey Wit Some Jo