Love finds me
love finds me at midnight/ outside an address, only an Uber knows the way to/ Made of my freshman year regrets/ a white man making me home/ me thinking/ a man with skin the same shade as a Microsoft word doc/ or padded psychiatric walls/ or erasure/ would be a good person to lose my virginity to/ wasted time/ the two months spent in a library basement unlearning/ inferiority/ and here we have an hour glass / the color of blurred highway/ and 1 am night lighting/ a thin vial of time/ sharpened into a double sided dagger/ or a pill/ self defense/ or/ self harm/ depending on the day/ powerful enough to let me time travel to all of these moments/ running out of magic/ every time I am/ in a position to change it.
Vocabulary for African American Studies
Question: What is Capital?
Ask Tupac about Juice. Ask Scarlet Jo as an Asian character. As a trans character. As MLK next time they make an autobiography.
Question: What is Erasure?
Gentrifications side effect. The theft of culture. Ex: Random French white men says Nigga. Says it again. And I think it funny, that that word somehow swam across an ocean that birthed it, just to end up as a colonizer’s weapon again. He says Nigga, and his limbs twist into the most uncomfortable of minstrel shows.
A white man says Nigga and becomes a star.
A white man does the Niggas dances and becomes a Nigga.
Erasure: the white man keeping the capital in his mouth, but never letting saliva drip into the ocean that brought them here.
Question: What is Disappearing?
Atlantis. An entire Black city sunk? It must be. What was the Atlantic before it was uh death bed? Who was Plato before he made millions myth?
What is Philadelphia? Mov bombing. An attempt to make Atlantis what the whites could not contain. You will find your answer in Oakland. If gentrification comes in waves
takes out thousands in one press of a button, or one passage of a bill, or one new Starbucks, then
Atlantis is Philadelphia is Oakland
Question: What is a Nigga?
Capital. Erasure. Disappearing.
D’mani Thomas is often times described as awkward, but in a cute way. As an East Oakland native and recent UC -Berkeley graduate, he spends a lot of time thinking about the differences that a few miles and an ivory tower can create for certain communities. His work typically explores death, time, and ways to bring the dead back to life.