Music, Writings and Art live from the twisted mind of Tokyo Cigar

R.I.P. To my sister IVY ( 1977 – 2007 )

R.I.P. Heath Ledger. The words posted on the VDB WU TANG mountain blogspot hit me like an enclosed fist, rocking my brain into a state of heavy contemplation. I wasn’t a fan of dude ( although i was excited to see the spin he gave on the Joker in the previews for the upcoming Batman flick ) but death is a very touchy subject for me right now since i lost my sister last month. I wasn’t going to write about this but seeing as how since i read about dude just a few minutes ago and have been feeling this weird feeling in my gut since ( not to mention the fact that while at the movies yesterday watching Cloverfield, the part when dude had to tell his mom his brother died had hit me hard as well ) I figured i may as well get this shit out of me in any way i can.

Death is a strong motherfucker. You never realize it’s power to devastate life until it strikes close to home. As a kid it was something i knew about but never fully understood. my earliest memory of it was riding through Lagos and seeing a boy and his little sister laid out on the street after what had to be a hit and run. From the window of the car i only saw their motionless, scrapped up, blood soaked bodies for a few seconds but i can still vividly recall the scene till this day. The second time it hit me was in Dublin when the janitor in Blackrock college passed away. I used to buy candy from him at one of the schools tuck shops ( spots where students could buy candy and little pastries ) and then all of a sudden me and the rest of the boarding school students are walking single file viewing his body in a casket. When i started to run with more thug type cats in Greenbelt during the late nineties they told me countless stories of friends and family that died or got murdered ( sometimes right in front of them ) in places like Franklin ave Brooklyn, south west Philly and south east D.C. the thing that struck me about it the most were the rituals they had. Everything from the time worn tradition of pouring out liquor, to the way on the anniversary of his friends murder Dry Tearz would roll up a dutch and burn it down without smoking it , to the tattoo Troub had on his arm that read “Thank you Lord for this day, thank you Lord for this wonderful day” which is what his moms used to say in church when she was alive. Reminders. Reminders of times shared, but more painfully reminders of the fact that those memories are all that is left.

The power of death is always strong cause as an observer of somebody’s grief you cant fully understand the emotional and mental hell the person has to sustain but you can feel a small dose of it’s power through their suffering. Before dec 29th i had only every cried over my cousin Maurice’s death this one day walking through Hyattsville bumping Nas’s “sometimes i wonder” on my discman ( the third verse did it for me yo ). Now stress and drama are nothing new to me and a couple of  times life had been so hard that the kid let off a few tears just to get those negative feelings out. But I HAVE NEVER CRIED LIKE I DID WHEN IVY DIED. Man listen, that shit was horrible. Stress, pain and drama i had been accquianted with but never straight full fleged DEVASTATION. Air wasn’t the same, food was’nt the same, music which always served as my therapy for the first time ever in my life was hard to make. My liver is still mad at me for all that bacardi i was downing and even the la spot cats are kinda concerened that i am blowing more dutches than ever. At the drop of a dime my demeanor switches from happy to depressed according to others, and i find myself not wanting to be around people as much. The most painful things are the memories. The fun we had, schools we went to, fights we had, the sound of her voice, the way she stayed fly, her bulletproof swagger, the way she could walk with everybody from celebs  to real live street cats, the way she used to sing “sweet home Alabama” at random times, her kids, the way she used to tell me to go hard with the music, they way she used to dance, run track, play pranks on me, days we used to team up and pick on my little sister, the way her and my oldest sister used to talk, the way that every fly country i had ever lived in she was there too. EVERYTHING, AND THEY ALL HURT. The last time i hugged her was a few years ago cause when you live the life of drifters you tend to accept that people come and go in your life all the time but if i had know that would be it i wouldn’t have let her or her kids go. The way i came up was that Family was sacred. I put my music goals on hold for a minute cause mom dukes and my little sis needed help with getting by so i hold them down with rent, when Ivy came over last i gave her my room and slept on the couch, when i’m fucked up in the game my older sis holds me down eventhough she has her own bills, that’s how we get down. But when ivy died for the first time we were powerless to help her, no money we could send or compassion we could lend could help her and that was one of the things that hurt most.

When i sat down to write this i didn’t know what i was looking to accomplish by the end of it. The pain is still raw and the reminders are still there. I don’t know how this is going to continue to affect me down the line. Some people go through this and go crazy the others become motivated. Me being my usual oddball self  I’ll probably do both. My heart goes out to the Ledger family and all those that lost a loved one. One love, stay strong, mourn their death and represent their life.




I LOVE YOU FOREVER  ( my soul cries )

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