As I reached the brink of my childhood, and found myself pressed tightly against the glass window of adolescence, I had no choice but to proceed cautiously. Like in “The Wizzard of Oz”, a wave of vicious color assaulted me as I pulled the last of myself through. Immediately, I turned and pressed my body up against the door in an attempt to force myself back the other way.There, I stayed. While everyone around me became enamored with color.
In an instant, the order of life was eternally altered. People were no longer categorized in the same innocent, lines. There was only color used to classify kinds. Using only this guideline, people began to determine who they were most like; And me? I was presented with an abundance of opportunity to discover who I really was while the others were hopelessly blinded by this iridescent nuclear weapon.
In search of myself, I stumbled upon a haven in ‘Hip Hop’ music. I was presented with a plethora artists who I could relate to, in the fact that I could not identify with anyone, and would not compromise that which truly defines me for the purpose of association. I clung to these artists. Their expressions constantly reassured me of the value in my individuality. Their comforting rhythm was my theme, and the wisdom in their poetry was my gospel. Over time, my echelon of people were revealed to me. We were bound by our connection to the music.
Life became social again. I was finally able to express myself within a subculture that appreciated me. I was still not color classifiable, but in being unique, I found people who were my kind. They became my ‘other family’. We formed a bond that bloomed beyond the color coded brackets of people around us.
This lasted for quite some time. Until the thing that tied me to these people began to change, as I grew. The art of Hip Hop separated from ‘rap’, and became polluted. My “family” consisted of perverts. The extent of their interests was to “make love in this club”, to “back that ass up”, and whose goal it was to“sexually erupt”, and they all were ‘too dirty to clean their acts up’.
All too soon, the facts pounced on me, I no longer fit into this family.I still had my friends, and the old songs that claimed my love. I wanted more than anyone to find a way to re-relate to my ‘other family’. My love continued to run deep for poetry, but I seem to have dislocated the rhythm. I set off on a mission to relocate the beat, desperate to find the means to recalibrate to the ones I once related to. I finally stopped searching, and got along’ alone’. I continued to express myself artistically, and embraced my individuality.
On Saturday, July 26, 2011, the hip hop was miraculously popped back into my ear socket by Eulanda Shead. Her strategically arranged lineup of real artists proceeded to breathe the poetry back into rhythm, and inform me that all this time, Hip Hop has been living.
I was reintroduced to the echelon of people whose rhymes were so substantial, they could sustain a starving city. Whose passion rippled the road around them for miles as they indulged in artistic expression. In a matter of hours, my faith was restored in the Hip Hop culture. Although it seemed to be buried, it never perished. It could always be found underground. Safe are the sounds of my family, eternally moving me with their rhythm, and poetry.