The Ironic State of Black Men in Society (from ‘Prevail’)

During the Spoken Word Hour at the Baltimore Urban Book Festival this past Sunday, 7/14/13, I recited “The Ironic State of Black Men in Society” from the “Life” section of Prevail.  I thought it quite fitting considering recent events.  Video of the performance is forthcoming.

The Ironic State of Black Men in Society

Such complex, beautiful creatures:
Envied,
Despised,
Copied,
Immortalized,
Celebrated,
Yet condemned to damnation.

Often seen as failures, hoodlums, and vagabonds.
Rarely honored or acknowledged for the greater good they’re doing for their
     families, their communities, and themselves. 
With that depiction in the media how could their outlook not be gloomy?
But that’s only if you aren’t hip to the real T of their plight.

For some strange reason, in the larger society, it is hard for them to be accepted
     as intelligent, honorable, responsible beings in areas outside of entertainment.
And when this perspective of them is challenged, it’s met with all kinds of
     resentment, distrust, doubt, and downright hatred
Anytime reality trumps perception the masses can’t seem to handle it.

And when they happen to be seen in a positive light, and something happens to
     them, or they are accused of an action that casts a negative light on the initial
     impression,
They are immediately baited for the wolves.
Regardless of proven guilt or innocence, they’ve already been placed into the
     proverbial jail,
Never to be redeemed or forgiven.
They are made to pay for their misgivings and backfires—whether intended
     or not, whether guilty or not—for several lifetimes over.
Even after death, vindication is not promised, if ever granted,
’Cause the fickleness of society will not enable a shift in feeling, right, judgment,
     or frame of mind.

The road to justice and finding a relevant, truthful place for black men in this
     world does not seem possible in any of our lifetimes.
While the imagery and experiences are not, and will not, always be positive,
The belief that black men are no good is ever prevalent.
What has happened, unfortunately, to their plight has many causes and fingers
     that can be pointed at many places.
But the realness, the truth, and the change begin within.
Just because you’ve been denigrated to a certain caste in the world
Does not mean that you have to accept it or embrace it as your own.
Defy what stood before you;
Challenge what you’ve walked into.
Create something better to live on, and impact those coming after you.
That’s where your power lies.
There’s no guarantee that it’ll change minds,
But people will take note.

As long as you define who you are,
and continue to build yourself and your people up,
redemption is guaranteed.
There’s no need to seek the approval or consent of the outsiders.

© 2012 BuddahDesmond

“The Ironic State of Black Men in Society” is featured in the “Life” section of Prevail: Poems on Life, Love, and Politics. Prevail is available at iUniverse, Amazon (Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle), Barnes & Noble, Book-A-Million (Paperback | Hardcover), and other retailers.

Related Posts:
Happy 1st Anniversary to ‘Prevail’!
101 Days Project: Prevail
‘Prevail’ Featured in EDC Creations’ ‘2013 Summer Sizzler Book Tour Magazine’
BuddahDesmond Appearing at the Baltimore Urban Book Festival (BUBF) on 7/14/13 
BuddahDesmond Featured in MOOV Magazine

Latest MUSED Article – Looking For Black Leadership? The Savior Lies Within

Image courtesy of MUSED.
In my latest article for MUSED “Look For Black Leadership? The Savior Lies Within,” I propose the (urgent) need to look within ourselves to find the leadership we so desperately crave.  Some of us have penchant expectations that our leaders are the answers to fix the many ills which plague our community.  While leadership is an important part of the process, we cannot deny the power we have to create the change we wish to see.  For more, check out my article on the MUSED site.  Feel free to share and comment!

MUSED Magazine Online is a pioneering “digital destination for lifestyle, entertainment & culture for modern black gay men.  MUSED serves as a collective of experiences and issues we care about” (see About MUSED).  Its mission is to raise the level of consciousness for our community and provide reliable, relevant, interactive, and engaging content for its readers.  MUSED is the only weekly online magazine for black gay men.


Major thanks and props to Drew-Shane Daniels and the MUSED family for featuring the article! 


Follow MUSED on:  Facebook | Twitter

Follow BuddahDesmond on:  Facebook | Twitter

Peace, Love, and Many Blessings!

~ BuddahDesmond

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‘Dress Code’ at The Grammys? Check Out My Article on MUSED Magazine 

101 Days Project: Politics, Social Issues, Inspiration from Writers, & Other Passions

You know those times when you’re on a website and you see a category that appears to be a dumping ground for all the content that couldn’t fit into any of the other more descriptive categories?  It’s like the miscellaneous category (though they usually don’t call it that).  Well this last commemorative post for the 101 Days Project may appear to be that way.  Although, I’d like to call it the “Potpourri” category.  It also sounds better (and serves as an ode to Jeopardy).  “Potpourri” highlights a variety of posts on politics, social issues, writing advice, and some of my other passions (like cooking and tea).  Since I did not write as many posts within each highlighted area (as I did for poetry, music tributes and reviews, anecdotes, and inspirational writing), I thought it made the most sense to combine these into a hybrid category of sorts.  I probably delve into social and political issues more so when I’m not writing on my blog.  But I’ll hopefully be able to share more of this writing in the future.

Please check out the following:

Politics & Social Issues:

  1. (Day 99) 9/11–Day of Remembrance
  2. (Day 98) I’m Voting For Progress – Obama Biden 2012
  3. (Day 96) Michelle Obama at the DNC 2012
  4. (Day 80) Gabby Douglass Is Not Her Hair
  5. (Day 39) OUT (Written In Honor Of National Coming Out Day)

Inspiration From Writers:

  1. (Day 95) Inspiration from Chinua Achebe
  2. (Day 84) Inspiration from Toni Morrison
  3. (Day 81) Inspirational Quotes (from Writers)
  4. (Day 10) Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way Every Day”

Other Passions:

  1. (Day 92) The Kitchen, My Other Home
  2. (Day 87) Earl Grey de la Creme (Pearl Fine Teas)