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White Shame

First of all, are you really serious about White Supremacy and Systemic Racism?

If I assume that you are…and, you sound like you are…

Don’t you think you need to do more than write words?

Don’t you think you need to do more than write apologies?

Don’t you think you need to do more than shame yourself, and others?

What must you do to rid yourself of the crushing guilt?

The disease of shame fires through the veins of your heart

and pumps through your blood and being.

You are shame.

You paint shame.

You paint your children with shame.

You have been unable to cope

with your own heart,

and so,

You paint your children’s heart with shame.

You paint your children’s heart with shame

because you are unable to embrace

and love

your own heart.

You paint your children’s heart with shame.

You ignite their blood

and electrify their heart,

you have perfected your own machine,

and this is your most profound gift,

to them.

Never.
Never.
Never listen to someone
who wants you to feel shame.

Never.
Never.
Never accept that shame today
will solve the problems of tomorrow.

It is the opposite. Exactly.

There are some people with White skin
who have the most money
who have enjoyed the most privilege
who have lived in bubbled safety
more than most who refuse
to recognize their own love
who treat their own love
like a beaten dog
who treat their own hearts
like a beaten dog

Because of their position
they have power
they have a microphone
and they are teaching.

They are teaching their shame.
They are showing us their shame.
They are forcing us to shame.

You can not be forced to shame.
You can die standing up for what you believe
But you can not be forced to shame.

If you shame. It’s your shame.

If you allow your children to be shamed.
It is your shame.
Your gift.
Your legacy.

Who’s the first of these White folks
who feel so passionately
that they must have the world feel like them,
who’s the first to stop paying taxes.

Who’s the first to stop paying taxes?
Who’s the first to sell their belongings
and the spoils of their imperial souls.

Who’s the first to do more than speak words of shame
to infect the children,
and stop paying tribute to the structure
they speak so emotionally about
in their words.

Systemic = Government,
Where are the white folks who will stop paying taxes.
Where are the white folks who will stop paying for the structure?

I know where they are.
I see them…

Behind their words
behind their worlds…

I see you.

A Terrible Mistake…

Have I made a terrible mistake?

It’s possible.

And so I write now to examine it. I write as Damon Brink. I write in acceptance of who I am and what I have done and I write to examine and hunt for both the truth and the good. It’s possible I will find neither and I write with that fore-knowledge.

One thing is certain. I am not as good and as noble as I think I am, as I pretend to be, as I wish others to be. I have my share of misery, deep and often as seductive as a whore. I complain inwardly, I suffer, I blame and I seek to make others responsible for my own pain. 

I use anger like a weapon and I wield it with a skill born of 50 years of training and indoctrination. I take advantage of my privilege, often without giving back. 

I hurt the ones that are closest to me, that I love the most, purely out of an unwillingness and incapacity to look at and change my own perception. I am selfish, indulgent, petty, violent and prideful.

It’s not looking good. 

So what, then, is the point?

The point is, simply, that I am a human being, like you are a human being. We are not different species. And on this day, the day, eleven years ago, that I became a father, I realized something that I have since put away and then hid away. I realized as I looked into the eyes of my son, as I felt his helpless body and heard his first cry, as I stood in awe of the strength of the woman who had born him out and the wisdom of the women who assisted her, as I played a helpless and most fortunate observer to the process of life, I realized how far our world had drifted from our own hearts and our own love. As I experienced the birth of my son, I realized that every father had, at one time, had the thought “how can violence exist” in the face of this.

How can such violence exist in the face of my newly born child?

I had the thought that fatherhood could help save world, if it only could be held onto. 

I saw a world, enflamed and protected by the love of the father. 

And I have failed.

I have failed to keep my truth burning. I have failed to lead with the flame of pure love. I have given up and given in to the world around me and to the world inside of me. 

I have failed.

What have I chosen instead of the flame? What have I chosen instead of the truth? What have I chosen instead of the good?  I have chosen culture. I have chosen society. I have chosen emotional blankness. I have chosen comfort. I have chosen popularity. I have chosen righteousness. I have chosen obligation. I have chosen fear. 

I have chosen to remain quite while all around me fools plan for impossibility. I have been a fool. 

But No More.

No. Fucking. More.

Which brings me to my second point. Fuck You. I’m coming for you. I’m coming for the cowards. I’m coming for the fools. I’m coming for the righteous, I’m coming for the rules. I’m coming now and bringing myself, who’s been so slow and long away, I’m coming now, invite me in, you’ve had so much to say. I’m coming for all you liars, cheats and bores…and guess what you mutha fuckers, I’m teaming with the whores!

So get your violence ready

Because that’s all that you have left

and really it’s all you’ve ever had

since early on 

you came bereft

And the beauty of it all

is that I don’t even have to come

there’s no escape for you

no matter what

you’ve laid the table

what’s done is done is done

But life cares not

how you feel

or how you can convince

life doesn’t care if 

people agree with you

or if there’s no dissent

Life doesn’t care

that you have the law

doesn’t care that you are right

doesn’t care if you are mighty

what you have coming

is the night

and what you have coming

is the blight

and what you have created

for your families

is only, purely, fright.

I used to speak with honour

I used to care a lot

but I don’t hang 

and I don’t agree

with the folks

who run that lot.

So if you are a coward,

which you surely are,

There’s no escape from me

and I can only hope you dare.

And as you read this

and run in fear

and start to stutter, shake and stare

just know that I am waiting

to hear what you will share

and know that what you’re sharing

is for everyone and all time

and feel the weight of all the eyes

and all the hearts and minds

as you write and say your 

petty words

all wrapped up behind false names

you’re shining dull

for all the world

and I’ll kill you with my rhymes.

I’m coming for you

you fearful thots

and useless idiots

your day is over

hope you enjoyed it

but I know

that you did not.

Ok. So there’s that. Yes, i failed and I have failed to be the father that saw true love and true peace and true brotherhood, but I’m getting back up and dusting myself off. Come at me bro!

Part 1.

Claim What Is Yours

Why force it?
Because if you don’t it won’t happen!

What if that’s not true?
What if it will happen,
no matter what you do.
Or
it won’t
no matter what you do.

Back to being…
Back to being
is where I want to be
being.

So look now, my son, look deeply and gently
like Rilke would ask.

Be appreciative.

Look painfully and horribly
like Nietzsche would ask.

Be brutal.

Be Brutal
Be Appreciative
and claim what is yours.

Facing Hate

The world isn’t ready to have some conversations.
so…fine…
leave them behind
leave them in the dark
but then…
how do you not let
the dark
win?

What do you do
when faced with hate.
I feel embarrassed
as soon as I ask the question.

As if people haven’t been dealing with that for all time.
As if people haven’t shown the answer
As if people haven’t paid with their lives
As if I don’t know,
and therein lies my coward…
as if I don’t know…

Campbell says:
“The Labyrinth is fully known”

What do you do when faced with hate?
You hide
or
You stand and face it.

The Monster

The girl shrieked
the cameras recoiled
and then
came forward
to eat.
No one had to look up
Because there was
no one left.
There was just…

Feeding.

And there was no way
to ever get back again.
Everything had been…

Consumed.

The mothers knew better
but the knowing was not
accessible to them.
They had sealed it
Cauterized
with the pain of mortality
and reality of chaos.

The fathers knew better
but most were afraid
of the mothers
and were not strong enough
to hold.

I don’t know if I am strong enough to hold.

The biggest monster
has been revealed
and he…

HE

is hungry.

The Myth

I can hear
the tiredness
and the pain.

It will always break my heart.

But what else is a heart for…

What will I do when it’s over
What will I do when there’s nothing left to fight against
What will I do when they win.

Will I join them?

A fate worse than death.

Will I join them?

They will welcome me into their maw
glistening, sharp
ferociously hungry
they will consume me
like all the rest.

And then, I will be joined to them
part of them
and I can consume, unheeded
I can roar through
the life
deafening all with my hunger
to cling
to the myth of my incapable
and violated
self.

Bright and Hot

As I remove the blocks
and wet slabs of earth
that have shielded me
from my flame
I feel cold
disoriented
alone.

But there my flame is.

There it is.

Burning, bright and hot
True.

Futility

Under seige
under water
but I hear that I deserve it

And so it fits
my guilt, it sits
Eager for the brunt of it

But there is a glimmer
brighter than before
but still small,
and fragile like a flower.

There is a world
and I feel assaulted
from all sides
and from those I love

I’ve been practicing
to find myself
since I learned
of my true fate

And I wish I could do better
in the face of all the hate
but I’m grateful that I see it
especially in me
I’m grateful,
though not free of it
it’s not how I want to be.

And my single minded focus
will make it lonely in the end
So I listen to the Dalai Lama
and become my own best friend.

I’m told that I’m controlling
I’m told I am the key
to other people’s freedom
I’m told that without me
Their life, they would be free.

And I see how I’m the teller
of all the tales and stories
How I’m the holder of the keys
and the definer of all glories
I see how I’m not different
than what I claim to hate
I see how without me changing
I’ve stamped and sealed my fate.



Smoke and Mirrors For You

I am the center of it all
like the earth
in stories of old,
you all revolve around me.

I do not care what has been proven
because what I know
is that
you
revolve
around
me

And so I will take my
righteous place
at the center
and point outwards
at the ills
shooting at them
like skeet.

Are you telling me
that you are right?
And what if I agree
and you no longer
have the resistance
to define yourself?

What then.

Have you killed
the ills
and settled your soul
and now can feel peace
and now are safe
and justified

No?

I take my place at the center
and point out at the world
sure
I am sure
that is my gift
to myself
I had pain
and I turned away
the truth came to my door
I’d be searching for so long
and there it was knocking
and I turned away
and went back to my anger
and because I turned my back
there was nothing left
but to stoke the anger
glimmers of hate
growing stronger
and blue green
I stoke
and point my fingers outward
from my central place
in the middle of all things
I am the king
you are a bother

And it’s ok to continue as you are.
It’s ok.

But if you want to show yourself
beyond the smoke
it’s possible,
you just have to want
to face the mirror.

Smoke and Mirrors

There is something coming.
There is always
something coming.

But I am light

And you are light

And what’s coming
is light

You cannot be afraid
of light and live.

This is the test of all time
the one every hero
every sage
every god
has faced
and come through.

We are not meant
for what we think.

What we think is shrouded
in fear
the darkness in front
of the mirror
the smoke

And we can’t see
our reflection
because of it.

Is your life
the smoke
or the mirror.

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