Building Community in the Martial Design

By Njoli Brown

It’d be simple enough if it was just about stepping in, training and stepping out. But recently had a conversation with students about the importance of fraternizing. Spoke about how some of the most valuable things I’ve learned in my time both in capoeira and kali were learned outside of class on my mestre’s stoop or over breakfast or building instruments, at my mandala’s favorite hangout or on the beach. Taking the time to connect with your teachers and your comrades reminds them of your investment and of the value you place in their investment in you. It’s where life talk happens and context for all the training gets explored. http://ow.ly/xz2J300ome9 http://ow.ly/i/jwNgS

Bx 41, Bx 12… They Don’t Love you

Not in service, Not in Service, Not in service

25 min, 35

Why should I expect the bus to show?

The streets haven’t even been cleared

The snow has gone black and slush

5 doormen, 5 custodians

An ex-con, a new mom

Students, grandmothers, teachers

We all, a slow trudge to Fordham

A slow trudge to Grand Concourse

D train

B train

81st

The M79, the route is clear

No Room for Flowers

there’s no room for

flowers in the playground

children plant

feet on the ground – before

a leap to the basket

full of under ripe fruit

and drop flesh in

a crash

encounter with the man-godly enslaver

the blacktop is cracked

it’s where god-men launch them

selves

trying to escape

from built things

-Njoli-

A Capucine Bailly photo
A Capucine Bailly photo