Category: Spoken Word Artist


20couch-600

 

The Red Couch

There are some scents
that have the potential to remain forever.
A sage ritual
backed up by a full bottle of Febreeze
sure ain’t a quick fix for this.

When I sit,
the memories engulf me,
hugs me tightly.
Sadness strikes me,
like the right fist
landing from a drunken hand.

The lingering aroma still nestles
under the portal of my nose.
It makes my eyes water,
revealing emotional toxins still remain.
It’s a confusing solvent of shame and pain.

Uncatchable tear drops fall
and blend into the Red fabric,
already soiled by the tang of defeat.

The Couch in my living room
now resembles a chest of unappetizing awareness.
Even when I think its gone,
That Smell..
Of Mr. Daniels’ escape through his pores
mixed with remnants of nightmarish cold sweats and
tears of self hate,
after witnessing the role he plays.
His life is a rerun seen behind his closed lids.

That Smell..
It creeps in like a plague
and makes the inside of my head bang.
This must be what his hangovers feel like.

That Smell..
It just wouldn’t go away.

I use to curse him
for bringing that essence back into my home.
That was not the childhood flashback
I wanted my Boy Kings to know.

That aura overpowered so many things
home cooked meals,
baked cookies for desert,
evidence of fresh laundry
and perfumed lotion.
A home with a newborn baby,
should never posses the stench of death.

I’ve scrubbed this Red Couch
an endless amount of times.
When I ask my guests,
I’m told they don’t smell it.
I’m tripping.
It’s just me.

My oldest son,
he knew when that hateful fragrance was in the air.
That was his innate clue,
there was tension brewing.

Folded sheets and stacked pillows,
with cases displaying that a nose
dripped coke laced blood on it,
held a crooked structure at the base of the Red Couch.
Or, the end of his temporary,
turned permanent bed.

Occupancy never beginning before the hours of 3 AM,
his Budweiser perfume followed him
from the car and up the stairs.
It dwelled in the hallway,
where he left his shoes.

It bewildered me,
how someone could be okay,
walking in shit daily?
I wondered,
why didn’t he choose,
to take a tour on a different path?
I continued to,
love him,
hoping to revive his senses.

He ignored how his actions
left me lastingly carrying disgust,
instead of the his last name.

That Smell..
It just wouldn’t go away.

Even after I got rid of the man,
tossed out his Liquor fumed sheets
and countless meditations of release-
It wasn’t enough.
To free me.
Of his energy.

The perceived funk,
the semblance my baby remembered his daddy by,
the nasty spice he left on my Red Couch,
was that subconscious switch
that made me so angry.

That Smell..
It just wouldn’t go away.

I had to do the very thing,
I vowed I would never do for him again.
Forgive.

That Smell..
Now on my Red Couch..
much like my hope for an abundant and joy-full future,
Is Just Like New.

© 2015 Tenisha M. Jones

 

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The morning after disappointment,
your mind plays a repetitive trailer
featuring foreshadowed futures
climaxed with each erased never intended.
Scenes sensualized by impromptu phrases
and charming punch lines of lies
that have been encouraged by the possessor
of an impatient heart.

Make believe
makes more sense
than a bed
with a solo occupant.

Insecurities wrapped in the warmth
of negative spirited body heat.
Human flesh smothers the desire
for emotions to heal.
Gut instinct becomes masked with sexual lust,
all while floating on a stream of tears
produced by your cloudy existence.

That’s what happens
when one acts as if
they’re ready for love.
When in fact,
they’re not.

Prematurely promoted intern
with lessons of the past, never learned.
Self-Teacher with enough credentials
to earn a MBA…
Master Bullshit Attractor.

You are what you answer to,
“Baby”,
fetal positioned moments of satisfaction
construct the obligation
to pamper an asshole
with swaddled love.

Grow up..
Learn to love yourself first
© Tenisha M Jones 2015

 

 

This weekend I invested a lot of time focusing on spiritual cleansing.  I felt as if I needed to get grounded among the abundance of the universe.  The benefits of taking time out of your day to appreciate the greatness already within your world are amazing.  Appreciation for the small things becomes more prevalent and sincere.  When your heart is filled with gratitude versus remorse or regret, it allows your true purpose to come forth.  Today, I give gratitude for God given talents.

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16

God’s light within you shines differently than your neighbors.  We all have unique talents to build an empire off of.  From my observation, those that are living out their purpose shine the brightest.  One of the famous sayings regarding following your dreams states “if you’re doing what you love, it doesn’t feel like work”.  If you read about the history of self made millionaires, they followed their passions first, and the money followed.  As a result, some were able to become the biggest philanthropist.  Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Alicia Keys etc…  In the words of Steve Harvey “you can’t help anybody broke”.  Ain’t that the truth?

Last October, I decided to leave the sales field and I have been in a state of panic and uncertainty every since.  The occupation was stifling me spiritually as I felt I was not using my working hours serving the universe or fulfilling my purpose of being a healer.  My deeds were only getting a corporation and its executives wealthier and I got caught in a cycle of redundancy and monetary competition.  My experiences since, has made me more humble and trusting of God that he’ll keep me while I find my way on the path he wants me to follow.  I am so grateful for this journey.  Many don’t get the opportunity to step away from the hustle of Corporate America to truly find themselves.  Most that do, don’t take advantage of the time given.

I asked God to give me insight into what my purpose was nearly eight years ago.  Once revealed, I remained disobedient for years afterwards.  Now that I’ve allowed God to remove garments of fear from my soul, I am not only grateful but proud of the talents he blessed me with.  I am a writer, a counselor and motivator to many and most importantly, the sole caregiver of a young man that is destined to heal the world in his own way.  I am so thankful and honored.  Therefore, I vow to never let my light go dull, to consistently work on perfecting my parenting and writing skills, and to combine diligent work and non-wavering faith.  My eyes have finally seen God’s glory and my feet shall forever follow.

 

Over the past few days, the world’s media has had non-stop coverage of the hunt and capture of the Boston Marathon bombers.  The blasts resulted in three deaths including an eight year old boy.  His death made me recount another disheartening event when twenty elementary age children were gunned down in Newtown, CT December of last year.  While driving on highways, I see Amber Alerts flashed across electronic bill boards often.  Facebook posts give daily reminders that somebody’s baby is missing with pleas for the child’s safe return.  Today, I give gratitude for God’s constant protection on me, my children, my siblings and parents.

My son, who will be turning nine this year, spends most of his waking hours during the week at school and after school.  During this time, his well being is placed in the hands of school administration, bus drivers and after school teachers.  He has never come home harmed mentally or physically.  He and I are in the car quite often, we have flown and drove across the country and he spends a lot of time outdoors with his friends.  Thank God for ensuring we, most importantly he, made it home safely.  He may be bruised and scratched up due to his adventures of being a boy king, but his injuries has been nothing that home remedies and kisses in the right places can’t fix.

As I’m preparing to give life to another child, I am grateful for the power of motherhood and God giving me the ability to create and birth life.  It’s not until I lost a child due to a miscarriage that I truly began to understand the magic of carrying life within my womb.  As an unmarried mother of two, I have struggled many days financially yet Tyler and I have NEVER been without food, shelter, clothes and love.  I know God will safeguard the newest addition to our family as well.  I love him so much so this!!

Lastly, 2013 has seen a lot of deaths, either naturally or from senseless violence.  Nearly everyone I know has been to a funeral of someone who left this earth way too soon.  I couldn’t imagine the grief of my parents having to bury me.  All parents wish to have their children out live them.  Lord knows, I’ve had my knucklehead moments.  I also travel a lot by myself and love a good adventure.  God assured that I never ended up at the wrong place at the wrong time.  I look forward to seeing my parents at my children’s graduations.

I’m so fortunate to have my family and God in my life.  I’m learning to become less controlling of every moment and give custody of my life to the creator of my life.  In this day and age it seems as if the world is going to hell in a hand basket.  Therefore, being grounded and one with God as well as consistently keeping your children, brothers, sisters and parents in prayer is a must.  Giving gratitude to God for doing just what you ask for is an additional must!

“But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children–” Psalms 103:17

 

A friend of mine did a 10-day praise challenge and mentioned that the experience was exhilarating for her. During this time of chaos in the world and my own internal conflicts, I thought a praise challenge of my own would be extremely beneficial. Many times, most of our mental energy is spent on reflecting on the why not, why me, when will the pain go away- that we neglect to take pride and honor in the blessings we already have.

Today, I give gratitude to God for his Mercy. According to Wikipedia, mercy “is a broad term that refers to benevolence, forgiveness and kindness in a variety of ethical, religious, social and legal contexts.” God has provided a shield for me in all contexts above. I’ll admit that my personal relationship with God fluctuates based upon my level of happiness. When I am the most content in my life, I tend to stray from learning and meditating on God’s word. My dedication to serving others diminishes and my prayers are said in faint tones, if at all. It’s not because I’m arrogant enough to believe God didn’t help me accomplish the elation I feel within. I just become so wrapped up in the moments and/or relationships, that I have a two track mind. Me and mine.

Conversely, in times of despair and confusion, I call on God to save me multiple times in a matter of minutes. My spirituality has taught me that my relationship with God will never waiver. It’s amazing how watching/listening to Joyce Meyer before I rise out of bed to start my day, tuning into the gospel radio station during my daily commute or giving God thanks for the great and even foolish people I encounter, gives my day and every moment within it a greater purpose.

Today I give thanks and praise to God for loving me unconditionally although my love for him has been conditional at times. I’m grateful for the discernment God has provided me with that I need to improve my on and off again spiritual connection in order to keep joy within my heart. I realized today that I have always been forgiven and welcomed to talk to God no matter how high my sins stacked. Therefore, I need to extend a more forgiving and non judgmental heart to others. I’m forever indebted due to having the most loving figure known to man to talk to on the loneliest of nights. My debts will be repaid by loving and appreciating myself and my family more, proactively serving the community and extending agape love to every soul that crosses paths with mine. I will be as merciful to others as God is to me.

A(she) and A(men)

Luke 6:36

“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”

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     Most will say that the last few days of the year should be spent in reflection. Others even go as far as strategizing how the first week of the new year will be spent. Believing that how you bring in the year is how the rest of the year will go. Admittedly, I’ve tried all these tactics in my past. I took a vow of silence the last 48 hours of 2011, in the hopes of receiving divine direction. It was the most peaceful two days I encountered. However, the year that followed was the most treacherous.

     2012 has a been a year of self discovery for me. Partly from forced life lessons, others I searched for. What I’ve come to learn is that peaceful moments will always reveal themselves when a person is in search of it. However, it’s the maintenance of peacefulness that we seem to struggle with the most. The wrestling of our spirits is what keeps many of us up at night or knelt in prayer. Our spirits act as if it’s imprisoned within us.

     At this same time last year, during my fast from speaking, I allowed my spirit to rest. As a result, I received the answers from God that I was looking for. Prayer, fasting and reading spiritual literature allowed me to subdue logical thinking that was blocking any other voice besides my own. Although, I hear God’s voice more frequently now, my own inner voice is still the loudest and has the most impact.

God’s voice told me go,
my own voice told me to stay.
Stay comfortable.

God’s voice told you to go,
your own voice told you to stay.
Stay safe.

     We have become a nation of comfortably safe insomniacs. We’ve slept walked into a time when Mayan culture predicted wouldn’t exist. We’ve witnessed the mass murdering of babies in a fashion we never would’ve dreamed of. The desire to remain asleep should be no more.

     The media laughed and corporations capitalized off the Mayan philosophy of our world coming to an end. No attention was paid to the additional aspects of their theory that this age in time could not be predicted as the “dead is to be born again”. Today, more than ever life is what you make of it. How can we live life to its fullest half awake?

     As many of the world’s inhabitants were preparing for the world to end, others mocked the predicted concept. There are few who prepared for their calling to teach to be revealed. Faith is a learned and re-learned belief. It’s the enlightened ones who allowed the imprisonment of their spirit, God’s voice, to start a new beginning by experiencing freedom. A purposed filled life isn’t birthed until your voice repeats that of God’s and your feet begin to walk down your newly claimed cleared path. According to the book of James, “for the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.”

     As 2013 approaches, reflect on all your previous reflections you have yet to act upon. I guarantee nights will become more restful and smiles will become a more frequently seen fixture on your face once you accept your membership as apart of the Holy Trinity. Your spirit should not be competing with the views of the world or your ego. In 2013, stop thinking so much….and just DO. Just GO! Just BE PURPOSELY HAPPY!

I committed mail fraud
the day I confiscated my son’s note to Santa
a criminal act done out of heart felt intentions
to make a little boy’s eyes light up
as bright as the remaining working bulbs on our
anorexic, vertically challenged tree.

A crime of passion
with limited unhappy consequences
well so I thought…
especially since the ghosts of Christmas past
has known me to be the only parental helper
Santa has for him

My son’s seasonal wish list
with hand sketched hearts for postage
unintentionally excluding a destination of return if unread
innocence still gives him the confidence that all wishes can come true
when you believe with your whole heart,
so he made sure not to leave any white marks
in-between the red outlines.

As I unsealed the envelope shaped construction paper,
the cracks in our family structure became visible
avoidance is longer a strong enough adhesive
to seal emotional wounds

He wrote:

Dear Santa:

All I want for Christmas is for my dad
to come and play with me
so I can tell him I forgive him and love him

Please and thank you.

On Christmas Eve,
instead of wrapping gifts
I knelt in prayer for a Christmas miracle
for Santa to deliver potential impossibilities down the chimney.

I hope the North Pole UPS workers delivered my letter.

I wrote:

Dear Santa:

Don’t let my son’s heart turn into coal

Please, I beg of you

Bah! Humbug!

“Making it easy, for the clean-up woman, to steal my man’s love”

 
Who me?
You can’t be talking to me
as if a woman like myself
would want to take that position
in any man’s life knowingly.
 
I’ve always had a distaste for leftovers
and I wasn’t hungry for what I’ve never had,
until he came along.
 
When he was served to me,
his plate appeared to be completely clean
no emotional residue left behind by you
he assured me,
he had room to carry both my son and I
he promised me,
he would position me in such a way
that only the finest garnishments would be placed on me
He knew just the right spices to add to my life
a worry-less mind
daydream induced smiles
made me sweeter.
 
I had no clue he was attempting to offset
the bitterness you left on his heart
like an invisible mildew
A modern day alchemist is what he is
turning shit to sugar
his pet name for me is what he prayed you could be
sweetie
 
I helped him turn back time
he’s at a place of happiness again
but I had no idea he was lost
still trying to find his way back
from the fork in the road you two paved
with a foundation less sturdy than quicksand
 
He never told me
the reason he feel in love with me
was because I stopped his heart from sinking
I wanted to be this man’s wife
not his fucking lifeguard
 
Shit I’m asthmatic
and loving a man who’s emotionally
coupled to another woman
is a never ending battle
that I may not have enough wind for
I repetitively use too much breath
repeatedly asking him to mark visible boundaries
that’s as clear to you as the stretch marks you earned
as the mother of his child
See there’s lines that you need not cross now
the happy beating side of his heart
the parts of his brain that still believes in his own dreams
I worked to revive that!
 
My hands are calloused from holding this shovel of hope
trying to cover the underlying issue
in my relationship with him
he still wants to create memories with you
while I’m trying to keep that part of his life buried
so he can live life with me
 
I’m tired of fighting with him
not because of what I do or don’t do
but because he refuses to accept
that he’s not over you
my heart can no longer be used as a rag
attempting to shine up your trash
to be my treasure
I want to be the only woman living in his heart
not the servant,
cleaning up the mess you two made
 
I quit
 
© 2012 Tenisha M Jones

For forty days and for forty nights…
I cried.
Tears rolling from my cheeks to silk bed linen,
the outline of wetness on my pillow case
resembles a shallow river.
Man made by me and my shallow emotions

Poor me.
Fuck you and
They ain’t shit
are the echoed sentiments
that bounce from my brain,
to my mouth.
From my mouth,
to my heart
until the grief decides to reside in my stomach.
No wonder I can’t achieve that 6 pack.

I’m full of it.
Full of confusion,
full of doubt
and the weight of my worries have me sinking.
Tears from everything opposite of joy,
is drowning my faith.
I’m caught knee-deep in other people’s crap
and I’m up to my neck in debt

Sink or Swim?
Where is my life guard?

Sink or Swim?
Who is my life guard?

The feeling of drowning above water
closes the hope chest containing my soul.
Now I’m having panic attacks
I need a breath of fresh air,
a little assistance to revive my reason
for believing in better.

Who can provide it
when mouths surrounding me are tainted like mine
swampy mixtures of complaints, self grief and pity
slobbing down their cheeks
hunger in their eyes,
ready to sink their teeth into my vulnerability.
I’m bleeding for more.

Sink or Swim?
I call out for a life guard

My wounds have made me weary
I just need a little bit of rest
I no longer can fight the waves of life
– sink or swim –
that come crashing down on me

Sinking –
I call out to God,
“wake up, shouting,
Lord save me!
I’m going to drown”
Sink or Swim?

“He got up and rebuked the wind
and the raging waters; the storm subsided,
and all was calm”  Luke 8:24

I hear God say:
Baby girl, just because you was sleeping on me,
doesn’t mean I was sleep
I’ve been waiting on you to wake up
and gain vision through discernment that
I’m the one that’s always had your back.

God told me:
I didn’t give you eyes in the back of your head
simply because you’re supposed to trust me
not the digits in your bank account
your girlfriend’s worldly wisdom
or the lies told by a man, you believe,
because he knows more of my scriptures than you do
I know what’s best for you!

Swim

I gave God my hand,
my worries,
my guilt,
my future
and he led me back to dry land
where my wounds would heal
and the ability to live self-inflicted pain-free
strengthens my faith
allowing me to walk the path to prosperity
God paved for me

“My ears shall hear a word behind me, saying
‘This is the way, walk in it’
whenever I turn to the right hand or whenever  turn to the left” Isaiah 30:21

I became familiar again with the realization
that for forty days,
forty nights,
every remaining moment of my life,
God continues to take care of me,
never-ceasing to save me.

He guards my life.
 

©2012 Tenisha M Jones

 

I posed a question to a group of girlfriends regarding communication issues within relationships.  Reason being, I came to a point in my own relationship, that I wanted to lead by example.  However,  I’m admittedly an untrained teacher.  My friend suggested that I read the book Love Dare written by Alex and Stephen Kendrick as a guide.  She mentioned her marriage was positively impacted by applying the principles learned in the book.

I must say that Love Dare, based off the movie Fireproof,  will be added to my list of literature that altered my process of thinking and actions.  The biggest take away for me after watching the film, is that submitting to unconditional love is a choice.  Without a doubt it’s one of the biggest and most rewarding decisions a human can ever make.  Conjointly, I accepted a new ideology on love –  love in its purest form is loving with every fiber you’re made of, expecting nothing in return from your loved ones.

The poem below was inspired by the film Fireproof.

“Loving is living simply because love creates life
and if the world we live in is full of boundless possibilities
why is it that love has so many barriers,
self-imposed restrictions
a most wanted list of superficial needs
a defined definite number of forgiveness passes

And we wonder why love don’t last
instead of offering up our last
we stop at half
fractionating the relationships in US communities
by using generational ass backwards math

A full circle never equated to 100%
and if you’re only willing to go half the distance
on a cut off, society drawn up road map
that statistically has taken marriages down the wrong path 41% of the time
then you won’t be able to comprehend
sticking it out when love starts to burn
and offer selfless self-sacrifice in order to douse the flames
you may or may not have cooked up
see fault is irrelevant when your home is crumbling to an unidentified house
sometimes you have to lose yourself to save your father’s inheritance

So let your heart boil to pure gush at the point of 212◦
the atmospheric changes will elevate your thoughts and actions
your ability to love beyond conditions
your patience to solve a problem when the solution isn’t easily divisible by two
x plus you has to equate to 360, symbolized by a wedding ring

Achievers always keeps the end goal in mind
so don’t proclaim to be marriage material
or a good husband or wife
when you’re only willing to work at it part-time
inhibited from giving more than your perceived all
due to an ailment that has made generations of men fall
pride.

Love and pride don’t mix like two people and one wish
you find yourself in serious…
a seriously lonely place
and although we all came in this world alone
no one wants to die that way
so love everyday with the end in mind
it’s the greatest gift ever to be bestowed on you in your lifetime
but you have to work hard to keep it indestructible
damn near fireproof…”   

©2012 Tenisha M Jones