A Harlem: A Reflection of Life’s Cycles
Today, the spotlight of my gaze shifts from the past to here-now.
Yesterday a good friend of mine and I drifted through Harlem. We flowed with the current of this Memorial Day Sunday, allowing it to carry us along as we relaxed into Life and re-connected with the Village of Harlem.
I loved the quaintness of the French Bistro on 7th, and the TAKE THIS CRAP FOR FREE yard “sale” outside that brownstone on 139th Street. I now have a cake of handmade soap, a work of art that adds to the uniqueness of my bathroom decor; and yet another book to add to the overflowing piles in every room of my apartment.
I love the fact that I am now inspired to clean the crap from my own closets and drawers and set up a TAKE THIS CRAP FOR FREE corner in the laundry room of my building. I am always seeking ways in which I may begin to live a life of more giving and less taking.
Harlem loves me and I love Harlem. I love drumming with the folks in Marcus Garvey Park on as many Saturdays as I get my Bertha butt out of the house and on the express bus to Manhattan.
I love the hustle and bustle—the unique Harlem energy—of 125th Street where I sometimes walk the strip from 8th Avenue to 3rd—just for the feel of it. (Sorry, I’m old school and can’t remember those new names for the Avenues I’ve known since childhood!)
I loved the crush of Sunday tourists at brunch up at Londell’s yesterday; the accents; the cacophony of so many foreign tongues; the strangeness of so many white faces.
Then…there were the closed for-business-businesses…the gated storefronts…block after block after block…
Melancholy…bittersweet is what I begin to feel as I battle to accept the changing face of Harlem.
Death and rebirth…decay and new life growing from that decay…like the cycles of my own life.
Like Harlem, I experience my own mini-deaths each day as the no-longer-useful parts of who I’ve been gradually die-off to make room for the birthing of La Diosa–Crista.
And then one day—behold—a new face…a new form…a new life.
Just like Harlem.