If you haven’t already, please go back and read my blog titled Black As I Wanna Be: Chopping it Up with Ezekiel Walker. There you’ll find a detailed recap of our first encounter. Since then, we have kept in touch, kept each other motivated creatively, shared laughs and a multitude of ideas.
In this book, Ezekiel puts us in the backseat of his car accidentally turned mobile home as he transitions from a life he comfortably knew in North Carolina to a series of misfortunate events in Indiana. He describes the journey through all five senses using carefully crafted language and humor. While reading I felt raw emotions and shock at the conditions he was willing to be in for the sake of chasing a new opportunity. I was just as frustrated as he was being “sold a dream” in Indiana.
Now I wont spoil the book for you but you already know how I am. I singled out a few of my faves and I’m giving you a basic recap.
It was the first time in my life when I truly felt disposable and insignificant
Prior to his move to Indiana, Ezekiel informed his family and friends that he would be moving to Indiana for a career and living with a “mystery line brother” until he was able to get on his feet. He knew that if he would have told his family that he didn’t really have a plan in place, they would have discouraged him from leaving. He knew that there was no other way.
In Night On the Town we get the firsthand encounter of what it was like for Ezekiel to sleep in his car for the first time. We see how he determines exactly where to park and sleep and the precautions he takes to ensure his safety.
In I’m Just a Nobody and Ye, pt III, Ezekiel admits his feelings of having the tables turned on him going from being an intake coordinator for a Veterans homeless shelter to needing shelter himself. This experience allowed him to reflect on his performance as a former coordinator and reexamine if he truly was as helpful and attentive as he should have been.
Skeme is by far my favorite poem in the book and I have received Ezekiel’s permission to post it here. This poem set the mood for how I want to continue in my very own journey.
Smile without shame
Laugh without pain
Recall without regret
Sigh without stress
Joke without pause
See without fog
Speak without stutter
Plan without clutter
Feel without despair
Live without care
Eventually (a few poems later) Ezekiel is able to secure a job that puts him on his feet again. He proves that the willpower to survive will give you the strength to endure anything that life throws your way.
This collection of poetry serves as a reminder of the light at the end of the tunnel. Life is about taking chances and stepping all the way outside of our comfort zones and into the unknown.
You’ll soon find out once you read it for yourself.