Last year my daughter, Kantra forced me to pick up my crown. For many nights, on my knees, helping my four-year-old get dressed for bed, at eye level she’d tell me, “I’m a Princess. Mommie is Mommie Queeen and you’re Daddy King.”
We could be in a grocery store aisle and out of her pocket she pulls rocks, rose pedals, acorns, and handfuls of sand. She got a bike for Christmas and a remote control car. In the last few weeks she started going through this phase of loosing her temper. It’s new. We’ll get through it. She wild, teaching me to breathe.
Keeping up with my family is as rewarding as it is confusing. I don’t know if I can live up too what they are challenging me to be. They keep doubt from dominating my peripheral. “I couldn’t have done it without you,” my wife Haruki tells me. She’s polite. I love you and Busy B.
2017 saw Kantra start her first year of preschool.
Haruki got a job promotion.
I got to interview and write about: producer Karriem Riggins, the rap duo The Young Giantz, rapper Koreatown Oddity, Mar Mar, The Faze, Gizzle, M.Sayyid of Anti-Pop Consortium, filmmaker Mtume Gant, and artist Tadashi Moriyama.
Got my first cover story, featuring photographer Lukasz Palka.
Went home, saw my folks.
Met Mega and Late of the podcast The Mega Late Show.
Did my first podcast with them
Started writing unfiltered ramblings on The Microscopic Giant.
Me and the fam went on two summer vacations to the beach.
Saw The Milky Way.
Went on a ski trip to Hokkaido.
Kantra met the snow and loved it.
My ass slammed into snowcapped mountains, trying to snowboard.
At artist Ikeda Manabu’s retrospective show, paintings that I’ve always wanted to see stared back at me.
At the top of 2018 my parents got a new water heater.
They’re getting a new roof and fixing the water damage from Hurricane Irma.
Wifey just got a great review at work.
I’m getting an essay published.
I’m still married and still love my wife.
We’re going on our seventh year anniversary.
Martin Luther King’s birthday was this week, January 15th. He was the only King that I knew to celebrate. Letting popo whip yo ass to prove that they’re more of a danger to you, than you are to them… that’s a hard ass nigga.
Your dreams are a threat to their internal narrative. People project their failures onto those that are closest to them. They fear their reflection. To feel alive, they touch your crown, which is your hair. They want to be like you. Beyond the horizon, they are afraid of what thrives. You are the sun. When they look at you, you change color cause their eyes can’t penetrate your shine.
These are the things that I tell my daughter. I’m raising a black girl in Japan. She was born here. In America, if you born in America, you American. Here, you ain’t Japanese if you don’t look it. Don’t matter if you speak the language as well as Prime Minister Abe. You not like them. Japanese or not, bullying is a big problem.
“Why did you get so upset?” I ask Kantra. “Because Holly laughed at me,” she said. “People laugh at me all the time.” Her eyes shift. She starts to fidget as if to say, I don’t know what Daddy’s talking about. I just want to ride my bike and go to the playground. “Dare to be different,” I say, pointing a finger at her heart. Might sound uncool and cliché. Kantra’s grandma always made it resonate.
TMG was for storytelling and art worship. If I didn’t have my family I’d be an abandoned backpack full of journals. Some would think I was a bomb waiting to detonate. I am ill with this gift. There’s no alternative recourse for leaping into the darkness to find the ends of its facade.
My fisted heart pumps blue that turns red when it bleeds, marking the hole from which it leeks. Evolving into purple, its new hue is a symbol of adapting to living on the outside from within.
I am translucent, shapeless and swift like water, the closest thing the soul ever got to fully expressing the magnetic flow of its omnipotent power. I’m so everywhere I’m in front of your face like air. -Take a deep breath.