On so many different levels the place's name resonates with me. Mocha, like my skin color. Mocha like the name of my first truck. Mocha like beautiful brown skinned Ethiopian women with their beautiful faces, radiant with ancient, mystical loviness, accents with one of the oldest spoken languages on Mother Earth. They were there tonight. Served me OJ and a sandwich. Gave me a cup of espresso and made me feel right at home.
Mocha Hut on U Street, near where there used to be a thriving black rennaisance center in old DC, near where Duke, Count, Ray, Monk, Dexter played. Near the clubs my mom used to take me when I was a young teenaged boy come down to see her here after the divorce, where she opened my eyes, and ears, to cool cats and be-bop, post bop, big bands and small jazz combos playing shit that still rings in my ears.
Kelly was in town. Hadn't seen her in the flesh in way too long. (Go to my links and check out YellowGurl) Wanted to be there, wanted to say hi, maybe see her smile at me. Got so much more....gotta lotta hugs, gotta a big smile several times. Got to introduce her like I was Mos Def. Got to read myself.
Got to read myself. Damn, wasn't even nervous. More nervous at VONA but Mocha Hut, where many had spit some serious shit before me tonight, where many had ripped open veins and bled all over the floor, where the insides were on the outside in such fluid, beautiful, strong, angry, sonorous, haunting words. I spoke from my heart and my children's eyes looking at me look at the world, at my life.
One woman said I better show some more, wanted me to come do a set Sunday. Kelly said I was a natural performer. The brothers took me in and felt me, heard what I was saying and it rang true with them. I wanna do more, be better, say more.
All I know is that I'm showing there again. Kelly will be on the road somewhere else. But I'll feel her hugging me, saying that I had her weepy after my introduction of her. I can't remember that much of what I said about her. I do remember wanting to convey that I loved her way with words. I loved the fact that she is a part of my poetic family. I loved the way her face lit up when she saw me there, loved her thanking me over and over for being there. I hope she knows that she was my gift, my blessing tonight.
There were other gifts, other incredible artists there. Many blessings. I was honored and humbled to have shared the stage with them.
Droopy invited me back. My goal: To throw down like those young poets, no, not just like them cause I ain't that angry, that sensitive, that raw anymore. I see the world with softer eyes now. But as well as they. That I will have to work on.
And maybe one day I can take the audience places like Kelly did tonight. Exotic, far away places, places I could only have imagined before her words came to me. Places I had been but now saw with new eyes.
Mocha Hut, sounds like some far away, commercialized, tourist trap, drinking joint near a beach where little umbrellas stick out of rum drinks, huh?
Well, belly up to the bar. I'm buying!