Category: adoration

Empress PJ Crosby: Transforming VI Youth through Expressive Arts

Empress PJ Crosby, poet, playwright, director, is transforming Virgin Islands youth, through the arts at Pistarckle Theatre each summer on St. Thomas. Born in London, England and raised in Long Island, NY Empress PJ Crosby has been working with the youth since she was a youth and is an active outreach teacher of spoken word and poetry.

Over the years, Empress PJ has repeatedly travelled with her programs to St. Thomas where she teaches children during the summers at the Pistackle Theatre. Since 2012, she has returned annually to teach her leadership program. Funded by a grant from the V.I. Department of Labor, “Stopping Crime Starts at the Roots!!” her youth playwright camp is now in its fourth year.

PJ has also taught at Kidscope Inc., which serves child victims of abuse, neglect and sexual molestation on St. Thomas. She says that what strongly influenced her interest and drive for working with youth was active involvement with organizations such as the Student Government, Campus Women’s Collective and the Honor Society during her college years.

Empress PJ Crosby Performing at The Rock Lounge

Empress PJ Crosby Performing Freestyle Poetry and Advertising her Youth Leadership program, at The Rock Lounge on August 14, 2015

Released on January 22, 2011, A Journey With Empress PJ is her debut solo CD. As an active freestyler, writer, poet, public speaker and mentor, while on island, she also continues to use her talents while performing at The Rock Collective’s The Rock Lounge or mentoring youth in the Virgin Islands and abroad.

Photos by DaraMonifah Cooper and from Empress PJ

Photos by DaraMonifah Cooper and from Empress PJ

For more information on Empress PJ, visit her artist page or email her at romanticpj@hotmail.com. To learn more about the program watch this video and read this article.

Love Loan | Returning the Favor

If I borrow you my love
will you return it
battered and bruised
tormented and used
or will you cherish it?

drawing of meLoving me like
we’ve been
for ages
when it’s really only been moments
in each others thoughts

If I allow you to let me come in and sit for a while
just enough to make you smile
will you let me leave

or will this
innocent effort of kindness
passion and mindlessness
be too much to let go
once you know

I know of the pain you speak
and I too feel the void you wish to seek
though I’ve not yet found it myself
the hope of it haunts me

my realities have become fairy tails
and my daydreams my reality
I create heroes and halos from recycled matter
than have no home

this gives me solace
when I can’t find my way
helping others throughout their day
allows me purpose in a world of my own
where even the youngest appears full grown

a pleasant Distraction
yearning for satisfaction
not my own
I feed myself
by fulfilling your hunger

If I borrow you my love
will you return it
feeling that you owe me
with interest?
You’ve already paid

It’s actually me that’s returning the favor

© DaraMonifah

Sharing Captured Light

Is it greedy to capture light?
…or is it selfless to share a moment appreciated?

Image

Sometimes I feel like I’m being selfish by not sharing the beauty that lives of our environment daily

Here in our beloved United Virgin Islands, we walk on, drive through, sail around or fly over and live in it all the time, yet there are others who don’t have even a moment of the same opportunity to appreciate, be healed by or add to such a simple part of our existence

Videography, photography, painting, illustration… music, writing and now the web are our tools for sharing this beauty that is Nature

I figure if we share more of it, it’s just adding another opportunity to help others experience the peace, love, harmony, balance and energy that is life

Capturing light

in us all, there is light

 

even in what seems to be darkness

there is usually something glimmering in the distance

 

or it may be the reverse,

so close, that we are the silhouette, unknowingly

 

depending on how open we choose to set our mental, social, intellectual or spiritual aperture

we can either be blind

…or blinded

by captured light

Interrupted Violenes (Violins)

A graceful song sways by
with the wind at her tail
Timid thoughtfulness masked by
effortless radiance as the words flow like cane juice caressed by molasses

Violenes sung in the ears of so many
Trans-like tunes of a heartfelt temperament
A knowing smile, occasionally interrupted
By a slightly wrinkled brow

Not long before the resounding of her intent
Paints the walls of yellow possibilities
Brightening days with her warm sunshine smiles
And nights with her sweet yet sultry evening eyes

To miss her truly is a comforting fairy tale never read out loud
Forgotten thoughts of times never had
Dances never requested
And arms not embraced

Interrupted Violenes keep restarting their sound journey in my mind
My heart remembers words and feelings shared in silence
As the all knowing, yet seldom spoken disappointments stain my soul
Reminding me to make my true intention known…

Today.

For tomorrows are plans, goals, intentions, dreams and desires for after right now… just as yesterdays are/were those things that we’ve already accomplished, or not (yet). All still perpetual motion; the continuation of our doing. period.

© DaraMonifah

Thank you Junie, for the lessons. I now understand and innerstand your purpose in my life. I know you are at peace. I know you were tired. All will be taken cared of. It already is. Ase’ Rest well, until again.

Freedom’s Children

SankofaSaturdays.com

Empower the Youth with yesterday so our tomorrows may shine brighter!

Freedom’s Children

You were born
First in our hearts
Then our minds began their composition
Soulful songs of Love
Peaceful pulses of Creativity
Arising an Awareness, never before set free

Born out from the hills of our histories
And of the valleys of virtue
You flow into our oceans
Nourishing thirsty plains with peace
And filling our wells with wisdom
Your own personal journey to freedom

Our Ancestors paid a great price for you to be here today
Right now, when you are most needed
To remind us
That,
“We are all… Freedom’s Children”

Beautiful is he/she, who survives the struggle…
God-like,
A Majestik Freedom,
like an overwhelmingly strong, yet distant diplomat calling us to prayer…

My children,
Our children,
Freedom’s Children

Let us raise them up to rise above the shackles of tainted traditions,
with humble hearts and stifled egos,
so that they will sing and play for us,
beautiful music,
building and inspiring our community with
each note nurtured,
every word written,
every syllable spoken…

Dreaming big and loving hard with sincerity and a passion unfathomable

Allow them into your homes of cultural heritage,
so that they may innerstand Sankofa,
teaching us the true art of activism, community love and upliftment.

Freedom’s Children;
Liberate us with your Love

To be cont…
©DaraMonifah March 2011
Also found on: http://cyntjemusic.wordpress.com/2011/03/26/freedoms-children-poem-by-dara-monifah/In support of: http://www.freedoms-children.com

Unconditionally yours

If you do no more than touch me
do it from the depth of you

If you do no more than hold me
embrace me like I’m priceless

if you do nothing more than look at me
see me for my innermost beauty, pain, fears, love

if you do nothing
just love me
from a distance

but do it so that I know
how you truly adore me
how you know I cherish you, and us
and appreciate you as you are
even with all the unknown complexities that you hold dear
to yourself
know that I am truth

and that if nothing else
I love you
for trying

©DaraMonifah

myPrayer

Oh Divine Father/Mother Creator
as we continue knowing of your strength, power and divine insight
in everything we do, everyone we communicate and pass time with,
every place that we journey to (both physically and figuratively)
may we stop to listen and feel your presence in everything we do
guide us and bless us with holistic prosperity
that we might ramember your sacred way
let us give thanks and be one with you every moment of our existence
Ase’

Can I use you?

I introduced myself with my eyes…and he put his things down to listen. The
seriousness of my brow alerting him that he’d better sit down for this one.

I know I’m out of his league, but yet still… my determination to get what
I want always seems to ignore those specs… before I change them.

I ask him his name, and for a minute he doesn’t know how to reply. Then as if
someone reminded him, he spits out a melody sung out to him by his mother as she
nursed him during infancy. Sweet melody that I repeated to myself eyes closed and then
out loud for him to hear roll off of my lips. He behaved as if it frightened
him, how I commanded the letters to sing out his name for my own
entertainment, but I reassured him in an immediate smile afterward, that I
was just enjoying the beauty of his mantra.

I thought to myself as I looked him up and down…
and inside out…
what am I doing?
But I
couldn’t stop myself.

You see I have this weakness…
and I know it, but
it’s addictive.

Some call it being a spiritual succubus…
I just call it,
enjoying the finer things in life…

©DaraMonifah