photo by Robert E. Woolmington
after Jamaica Kincaid’s Girl
The garbage days are Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday; Thursday is also the day for recycle collection; remember to put both out the night before our collection day; I won’t always be here so, do your laundry as needed; always separate by colors – whites, darks, denim, lights and reds; you never want your reds to bleed on other light colors; sometimes you can mix denim and darks; stay alert; in the fall and winter seasons, be careful when wearing dark colors and hoodies; I know; stay alert; always keep your hands present around/when confronted by police officers; I know my rights; you don’t have no rights in the street - in the courtroom...maybe; and even then it wouldn’t be just; I’m American; stay alert; you’re already a target, whether you sag your pants or not; stay alert; know thyself; know your history, resistance is us; brotherhood is as important to growth as respecting women; stay alert; when you walk down the street with a young lady, walk on the outside; she is not for sale; protect the women of your family at all costs; respect your elderly; put the same effort in sports in your schoolwork; work hard and play harder, you must enjoy life; stay alert; don’t show your colors out in the street; “blessed is the child who has his own”; save your money for a rainy day; know thyself; know your history, resistance is us; brotherhood is as important to growth, as respecting women; always press your clothes the night before an interview, school function and church; this is how to tie a tie; this is how to polish your shoes; get your haircut every 2 (two) weeks; know thyself; know your history, resistance is us; brotherhood is as important to growth, as respecting women; this is how to prepare your résumé; always add updates as you go; know thyself; know your history, resistance is us; brotherhood is as important to growth as respecting women; preparation is key; always prepare for an emergency; take care of yourself; this is how to keep your room clean; messy space means you have a scattered mind; this is how to wash the dishes; always in size order to dry properly; don’t always look for a woman to cook; this is how you clean and season chicken; the Food Network always has good recipes; be careful of what you post on social media; stay alert; the world is watching you; always press your way; the system is built for you to fail; stay alert; know your rights; everyone doesn’t have your best interest at heart; everyone isn’t your friend; stay alert; be aware of your surroundings; respect to all is key; do what you love so you won’t wake up cursing the day; know thyself; know your history, resistance is us; brotherhood is as important to growth as respecting women; don’t mislead women; always be upfront; stand up for what you believe in and don’t back down; accept when you’re wrong; don’t boast or show arrogance when you’re right; there’s a fine line between cocky and confident; be humble; love thyself; there is no respect in misogyny; respect her rights as well as yours; finish what you’ve started; leave no loose ends; follow through with your commitments; committing to a woman doesn’t make you less of a man; Stevie J isn’t a role model; Daddy ain’t neither; he’s trying, Stevie J is just living his life and everyone adjusts to it; maybe; maybe, but I’ll tell you one thing, be the man he/she can take home to meet his/her father in pride; be the man you aren’t ashamed to be; ok?; what if that still isn’t enough?; for who?; my partner’s father; you ain’t dating your partner’s daddy; your partner knows that you’re enough and that’s why you’re there in the first place; you think somebody gonna just keep you around while you take and don’t fuel?; you stayed with Daddy; I’m also older and chose not to start over; you’re young with time to be better if you put you to it; don’t settle to be the lesser version of yourself; you’re watching you; ok?