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for loghan and nick


foreword First, I would like to acknowledge Morgan Nichol Mbadugha for relentlessly pursuing her dreams, and for the way she unabatingly loves in the process. Morgan is the combination of Nina Mosley and Darius Lovehall. This work of art is the perfect LoveJones the world continuously needs. Oftentimes society goes through spells of spiritual and creative malnourishment. I believe people who are brave enough to feed the world with what is inside of them deserve proper accolade. Morgan displays glimpses of her mother’s style, discernment/intuition, wisdom, affection, and fighting spirit, while at the same time showing the knowledge, comprehension, influence, and dominance of her father. This book is not just a mere accumulation of photos and witty words, but is the culmination of three generations of grooming, teachings, and prayers. Morgan created this as a display of her perception of the world around her and within her. She hopes to show her reader how to love themselves and truly celebrate self in all phases. I am very proud to present her to the world. This work is to be appreciated, treasured, admired and held in high regard. Take your time with it. Let each page have a resounding effect on you. Get ready for an unapologetic journey.

-Kelechi Mbadugha

“I’m hoping people are blessed by this, and while they’re learning about me, maybe they learn something about themselves.”


abba love without limit or agenda love void of fraudelence love measured by absolute magnitude love founded in intimacy love like a river love as the principle thing love patient and quiet and meek love steady and unwavering love without pride love like faith love blind


light years You’ve kept me, Close to your chest, All these years. It is second nature to Wrap me up in your arms. You’ve kept me, You’ve led me, You’ve fed me. I made my home in youSet my roots down deep In the soil you watered With teenage tears. Now we’re full grown, And evolving into pulsars, Brighter than the brightest star. You were brave, You are brave, To keep me.


twenty-seven The amount of bones in the human hand The percentage of dark matter in the universe The number of generations from David to Jesus Abbe Faria’s prisoner number in The Count of Monte Cristo The atomic number of Cobalt In Hebrew, the word zak means pure; it’s numeric value is 27


mars You know I’ve poured myself out, Dripped down And gathered into puddles, Turned to streamsYou know how steadily my blood flows. You know you will capsize sometimes Loving me. You know I have wrestled with myself, You know I carry contusions and welts, And belts of the kind of truth around my waist That dispel sorrow, and drown out confusion. But you are still disoriented some days. Sometimes I overflow, Only to evaporate in the Son’s rays, How I’m like my dad in some ways, How I taste like a Sunday, And peel and break and burst At what you don’t say. You know my tide rises higher than your expectations, But lulls and waters and sustains. You know I’ll never bleed out. You know I am Free when you need out.


you don’t cut like a criminal The thorns in my side Keep me humble, Keep me hungry, Keep me hurting in that holy way. Sufficient grace, Always the same, Even when I change, Blot out all my crimson stains. Leave it if you have to. Do whatever it takes.


NIGHT-TIME The concrete here drinks Black boys’ blood frequently. The clicking of shells Across its expanse echoes for milesThough it isn’t a regional thing. The concrete here has a mouth Wide enough to catch Even the swiftest of souls. A Venus Black Body Trap The concrete here breaks us, Shatters us into many fractions And factions. It is trampled upon By the weary, Worshipped by the loved ones of slain Women, men and children, With skin like night time, And hearts like time bombs, And eyes like novels In which the villain is always right, And the hero is always sacrificed.


weeping willow My granny takes yams Straight out of the can Warms them on the stove. My granny takes a hot comb And blows on my thick curls, Runs it through the strands, I flip my hair in the mirrorGreasy and happy, My granny teaches me how To starch the collars of my Papa’s shirts, I get all the wrinkles out. He crunches on ginger snaps, Mows the lawn, Calls her Mother, Smiles always, Even when he’s mad. My granny can’t help but laughAlways, Even when she’s sad.


binary star New Orleans is in his jawbone. Sometimes he smells like beignets. The width of his shoulders Is the length of infinity He is my place, my outer spaceThe materialization of forever, The coziest captivity. He plans to take me To the highest heights Our colors are written in the sky Like northern lights Most mornings, I watch the sun catch his skin Our blinds, bind the outside Our inside, our warm, We’ve sworn to let no man Put asunder.


BOTH HANDS I’m learning to clench my womanhood with both hands My body is ever-changing There are battle wounds stretching over my thighs, Blemishes and creases and cracks Dots and dimples I’m not as nimble as I used to be Not as firm, I am unsteadyQuaking under the weight of myself I fight until my wrists spasm Me and my body often call stalemate The mirror and me are at odds One of us is telling lies. Still, I’m learning to clutch my womanhood With both hands, learning to rest In the chasm between me’s I’ve only arrived, to leave, StillI’m clutching


STARDUST

You got your wish, We’re slow dancing in the middle of a meteor shower, On the other side of a black holeWe made it. We’re spinning so fast, we don’t even think to blink I can feel you, like you’re a part of me. Was it like this in your dream? Did you see me, adorned in stardust? Did you hold me, this tight? Like I might combust at any moment? Could you focus? On everything happening around us, When everything happening in us Was so brilliant? Can you feel this? Am I trippin? Is this love or what? Am I the one or what? Are you done, checking horoscopes? When we’re right here in the thick of the constellations. & my arms are a cradle for your neck & your hands are at rest In the small of my back, was it like that In your dream? You got your wish. We went to the moon- made December like June. You got your wish- now come back down, soon.


bliss Us kind of women should never fall in love. Our type shouldn’t weep so easily, shouldn’t live so recklessly. Us kind of women should be More careful when treading bodies of water Like our gaping wounds are gills We should be sturdier, Stop trying to get comfy in men like you. Us women have weathered too many storms, And now have ourselves become weathered and worn. We are too heavily arrayed, too perfectly adorned. Us women leave quaking members in our wake, Until there’s no room for our own sake. We are too busy making space for men like you. We are painfully keen, helplessly resigned, And men like you, Knowing but not knowing, are so unkind. We shouldn’t be so apt to carry you, but we do. And the weight makes us question our own sanity Still, our weak vessels drink you in, hold you always So not one ounce goes to waste, not one drop evaporates. Us kind of women can seldom sleep, but mostly lie awake Mulling over, and moving mountains To love you.


cold feet I haven’t changed my mind about you, I’m still in love, I’d still do it all over again to prove it I’m still present, I still want to hold your hand & slow dance with youI haven’t gotten cold feet, I’d still trek down that long road, and bleed out for you again, I love you more than desiring a cup of wrath to pass, I love you deeper than that - you cannot earn me, I’m free. I’ll walk in circles with you through deserts and wilderness, Through late night texts and unruly tongues. You’re still my bride, you’re still the one I’ll leave the 99 to rescue. I will always come back for you, I cherish you. Take this white gown, adorn yourself in my word, I promise it won’t fail, even when you do, and you know you will Even when I leave that thorn in your side, when your regret swells, And it feels like hell to pretend, to cover wounds, shift the blame, And hide the root- I’m still with you, I’m still down for you Even when your pride masks the truth, & you sell me out for some shekles, bury your talents And choose BarabbasI love you strong-I haven’t changed my mind about you. I want to listen to you ramble, I want to hear your petitions Do you know I’m sitting next to Pop? Praying for you always, loving you through your off days, & off seasons - I’m still in awe of you. It hard for you to see our resemblance, but I do. Man looks at the outward appearance, but I see you, I love you, and I promise, I haven’t changed my mind.


baby fat You are made up of Bubblegum and nunchucks The sweetest, chubbiest cheeks You wanted to be a scientist & a preacher Now, you’re somewhere in the middle. Never been too fond of finer things, Happy with Nickelodeon, and All the in-betweens adolensce brings Don’t you worry about the hurt. It’ll fall off like the remnant Of the umbilical It’ll fall off like Baby fat It’ll fall off like leaves From branches in autumn Don’t you worry, It’ll fall.


AS IT IS IN HEAVEN My heart feels like It could burst, you are so softYour laugh, your canonical babbling, The stuff the heavens are made of. I’m crying from sheer joy For the first time ever When I hold youSuch wonder, such majesty Right in the gleam of your eyes Golden Child, God breathed stars into your lungs, Look at what you’ve become, Light waves beaming out of your chestYour charisma, Your intellect, Is fire to a heart at rest, Your life, has saved me from myself.


NEBULA I don’t know how many lives I’ve spent loving you, How many times you’ve Coaxed out and wrangled Affections from the pit of my stomach. To the palm of your hands. I don’t know how many sorry’s I’ve spit into the soil of your garden. The milk has spilled, So have the sweat and blood and tears. I promise when I repent, it’s sincere I don’t know how many One last kisses My lips have laid on yours Enough to form typhoons In the hollows of my heart. A gale in the gaping wideness of me. I was barely existing, Just barely breathing, Love on the brink of extinction, Blasphemy on the tip of my tongue, So, I had to give you upI had to give you up.


agony My charm is an heirloom Wielded it like a weapon, Crushing hearts Like petals in a pestle You said once, Not with your mouth, But in a poemExisting like this, was agony You said, One night under filtered lights, You hated loving every moment We locked into one anotherOur maybe’s swallowing us whole, Our if only’s maiming our poor hearts. Is it wrongTo love you? You said one night, Not with your mouth but with your hands, You said, I should stay, and I wanted to, Badly enough to know it is so wrong to love you. No one should be needed like that, Only to wake up alone, Only to realize it’s always sweet, When it’s not yours to keep.


fight or flight It’s a warLoving like this, It’s hard to tell, Who’s really fighting for who. Foxhole or frontline, it’s an ongoing battle. The blood, the bullets, the utter brutalityThere’s no camaraderie, no morale, No soiled love letters strong enough to armor usThis all we have, this all we know, And it’s a war. We want home, But only the idea of it, The fire has changed us, Forged us into something we don’t have the capability to understand. What is certain is my allegiance, I am unmoved in my devotion, I live and die for you, Whether victory or surrender, or both, I’m committed. It’s a war. Becoming a casualty, casually, The cause is greater than the pain, And it’s a war.


nexus If I don’t get to you, My hands might Grow limp and weary. Nothing is worth touching. My eyes might shut, Permanently. If I don’t behold yours, My heart, If not tied to yours, May cease to beat. It might quit on me. You are the only substance Worth tasting, Worth settling in my stomach, Worth flowing through my blood If you don’t come, If I don’t get to you and you to me, How can I be? How can I be anyone else’s? But yours?


AFTERWORD I’m unable to fully articulate how important the completion and release of the book is to me. Each poem is a part of my heart. When I think about the span of my short 27 years on this earth, I am floored by the love my Heavenly Father has lavished on me. This book is a manifestation of so many dreams, it is the fruit of prayer and supplication, it is the aftermath of me letting myself break in the presence of God; this book is a part of my unraveling. I am coming into myself, falling out of love with the idea that I have to be more than what I am to be impactful, to please God. I am what I am and I’m alright with that. I am loved, therefore I am powerful, and it is a deep desire of mine for you to feel power leaping off the pages as you read these stories. We’re all in process, and we should celebrate that together, through whatever means gives us the most joy. This book is a part of my worship, there are unwritten Selah’s between lines and stanzas. His mercy, the blood of Jesus, is in the ink of every word. I love you, I thank you for receiving this gift, and am thrilled to say, this is only the beginning.

Love and Light, Morgan SDG


I was told not to write about a thing, until you go through the thing. Write about it when you’re on the other side of it. So that’s what i’ve done. This book is comprised of poems marking my experiences from love lost, to love found again.

Over the Moon  

My heart in poems and photos.

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