Happy Pride! During this month I wanted to gather up, in my arms, the pieces of myself I may have lost along the way, so I am writing love letters to my younger selves…
You are bold and loud. You speak your mind freely and easily. Like sugar cane, you are sweet and pure and good. Your skin is dark like azobe wood and your spirit warm like tropical mornings.
You give and accept love with an open heart because you haven’t learned to build walls yet. A few short years ago, life welcomed you to her shores, and life is kinder to her new immigrants.
I wanted to send you this note because even though the boy’s body will grow into the man’s experience, the inner child stays young forever, so...
Play. Make believe. Sing and dance. Climb trees and pick mangos and guavas. Eat cherries and drink coconut water, and even though you are growing taller, don’t slouch down to the level of those shorter than you, invite them to stand as tall as they can.
Run the streets barefoot with those stray dogs, and yes go on and touch one of the cows grazing in the field across from your grandmother’s house. Even though you’ll be butted away, touch and find out something new about life in a form that looks different from you.
Your time here on earth is meant to be fruitful and joyful. You understand this now, but too many forget joy as the years rush on by. I suspect you will too. Life offers many alternatives to joy, so don’t be in such a hurry to grow up. Slow down, the decades will run by fast enough, bringing with their passing falls and bruises and tears.
Accept this gift of childhood now and play. Cherish this spell of innocence and play. Play and wander and question. This is the blueprint, this is your template for happiness and freedom. In the coming years, when life begins to show you his ugly prejudices, you will need to recreate these feelings of softness to make it through those difficult times, you will need to recall and recollect... this sensation is delight, this pleasure is laughter, this sensitivity is love.
from Nhojj Poetry Vol. 3,
track released June 9, 2018
Written & performed by Nhojj
Contains sample of "I Like that..." by Nhojj