My Plan Not My Purpose (part 2)

My plan, not my purpose had me embarrassed and angry at the position I had placed myself in.

Part 2

One chair sits across an empty room on a plain discolored wall next to the door. A little television sits propped on the chair serving as entertainment that in a short period of time proved to be a distraction out of poverty. For the next four hours, cartoons would be the choice of education for these men. Men that had single mothers, children and “baby mommas” that awaited the attention of a man with purpose, drive and ambition that was so needed to destroy the generational curses of sin and poverty that was exposed every time I stepped onto the pavement of the apartments that were gravely positioned down a stretch of road littered with trash on both sides.

My plan, not my purpose had me embarrassed and angry at the position I had placed myself in.

The smell of crack cocaine came in between the stints of empty Vodka bottles littered about me. As we sat on the crumbling brick wall that lined itself along one of the apartment buildings, I listened to the meaningless and uninformed conversation of the men and women who determined success by the amount of money spent partying over the weekend. As the liquor continued to flow, a deep-seated sadness began to fill me. The only way to survive was to partake of the spirits.

But I sat quietly with a slight buzz from the Vodka because I am considering that I am out of my purpose, and anger is rising because my plan, not my purpose put me in a poverty ridden apartment overgrown with weeds that disguised themselves as people.

My plan.

Not my purpose.

Was taken me to nowhere.

To be continued…

© 2016 All words & images by Tanya Graham unless otherwise noted.

My Plan Not My Purpose

My Plan Not My Purpose

The apartment is gravely positioned down a stretch of road littered with trash on both sides. On any given night it would not be safe to walk alone. Weeds overgrown with a wilderness that mimics the very people that lived there. The apartment buildings exhibit an exhausted appearance of a woman once pretty but now worn and ugly from the men that have run through and in her.

The stairwell that leads to an upstairs apartment is dark, damp, and dingy.

My plan not my purpose led me up the stairs to one of the darkest seasons of my life. At no specific time, the smell of burnt plastic would fill the air. I soon learned this was the smell of crack cocaine.

My plan to be independent led me to sleep on an old mattress laid on the scuffed wooden floor of an apartment void of life. No furniture. No family portraits. No groceries to fix and sit around the table. Some days no water. Other days no electricity.

All by choice not by force.

My plan.

Not my purpose.

Was taken me to nowhere.

To be continued…

© 2016 All words & images by Tanya Graham unless otherwise noted.

Mist of the Rubble

Standing up in the mist of the rubble has proven difficult for most. Many of us have taken up refuge in the middle of the rough edges and broken pieces of friendships, marriages, communities, dreams, and success. We have been trapped in what seems like the bottom of a building collapsed by the instability of this ground that we now rest on.

Even though at one point we stood high and strong looking to the clouds and a universe of iridescent stars that represented all the things we dreamed of as kids; we sit with flickering thoughts of how do we stand up in the mist of the rubble that has become our life. The weight is too heavy to tackle on your own. As you only make up one piece of this heap of brokenness that surrounds you.

Looking close enough you can see the many intricate patterns that compromise each stone of your life. Color, texture, speckles, elevation, shape, mass…these are the differences that once held us upright. These are the people, the issues, the circumstances that if rebuilt at just the right angle will allow us to stand strong once again on top of a “building” once demolished by ignorance and inflexibility.

© 2016 All words & images by Tanya Graham unless otherwise noted.

Our Daughters

She is a beautiful vivid flower that requires blooming.

She stands out in the box of closed minds.

She withers in the presence of weeds that smother her roots and stunts her growth.

The soil that is to nurture her is filled with foreign unfamiliar objects that her young roots do not understand.

But she continues to struggle to survive in a world of strangely shaped weeds that impersonate flowers and introduces her to roads and travels, taking her to a place that dims her true potential.

She no longer has the covering that protected her as a seedling. As seedlings are very delicate and wrong conditions can ruin them.

She is stubborn to receive direction from the white haired elder that has been placed strategically beside her.

Sometimes she has trouble deciphering the elder with its peculiar appearance from the strangely shaped weeds. She finds this elder strange in voice and appearance. The elder does not look like the young flower so the elder’s words of wisdom go unheard.

The closed minded weeds are convincing and assertive. Their goal to drain the crimson color from her life so they can feel superior because now her glorious color has dimmed, and all living in the box look and act the same.

The white haired elder knows that time is running out so she does not give up reaching out to touch the very tip of this young flower fighting to be independent but different than the weeds that try to confine her.

© 2016 All words & images by Tanya Graham unless otherwise noted.

Can I Come Up…

Can I come up to the place that keeps you sane?

Where the wind blows all your cares away.

Where the freedom pushes you to soar in the universe of opportunities.

Where the clouds impersonate your long lost imaginary friends.

Where the beautiful blue sky takes you into a day dream filled with miracles that energizes all your senses.

Where the squirrels frolic freely without a sense of death.

Where the birds gaze down on the Earth walkers with sympathy.

Where my eyes and heart can see all the possibilities.

Where the world looks smaller than our problems.

-Climbing to the Treetop

© 2016 All words & images by Tanya Graham unless otherwise noted.

Treetop

Spirit and Soul

1Spirit to SpiritI love taking pictures of beautiful places and things. This one is a beautiful church in Atlanta GA. I used this picture for this particular poem because we often attend places of worship to bring balance to the turmoil that churns inside us. 

© 2016 All words & images by Tanya Graham unless otherwise noted.