Monday, December 27, 2010

Secret Santa Gift

An illustrated poem
for my Secret Santa
and Jamaican friend
Shotta Sue! Booyaka!


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Kadir Nelson Interview

"Wish upon a star, but do your homework too."
Illustrator Kadir Nelson gives an genuine interview of his life as an artist.



(Video Link) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0irzICuorQ
(Transcript Link) http://www.readingrockets.org/books/interviews/nelson/transcript

Monday, December 13, 2010

Exhibit Jay

Jay Electronica's writing ability is supreme. This is my thank you to him.




Journey of Babaloo

This is a piece
from a storyboard project
in my Concept Drawing class.
It's entitled "Journey of Babaloo".

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Wonders of Wordplay

So I definitely had these poems on repeat for a week. Saul and Brook kill it. The wordplay is ridiculous. I love it. Thus, here is the ripple effect of their poetry on me:


Saul Williams:


Brook Yung:

Robaloo (Me):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3OnFHmuK2k

Friday, December 3, 2010

crimson wisdom

crimson wisdom


though slow to erupt
the volcanoes know:
"for healing to come,
our feelings must flow."

-r.gibsun

Monday, November 1, 2010

Poem: Fishy Things

Fishy Things


We collect intellect
from surfing the internet
but some minds enter nets
and get trapped—in cans like sardines,
thrown on a shelf and sold with pork and beans.
But it’s all too fishy to me: I see Pisces
drowning in the Milky Way Galax-sea;
no wonder fish are so rich with protein.

And I’m a poor Aquarius that pours aquariums
of H2O that transform into glaciers when it’s cold;
so I pray that the water won’t bury us
because we make deals to drive hot wheels
to carry us— when Greenhouse Heat is nefarious.
I'm dodging waves, wishing times would change
but we still let the color of our scales vary us.
One fish, Two fish, Black Fish, Blue Fish
Red fish, New fish, I read that the truth is
we didn't evolve from fishes with dividends
but we all got pockets that the government is fishing in.
And the government is gassed and bills don’t get passed
because constipated bigots can’t give a shit. Yes, it’s a stinky
shituation. So buy some Ex-lax and mix it up with the facts,
to get a batch that’ll loosen the lumps in any lower back.
Spliggitty Splash! Stand up! Wipe your ass! Flush …
and let the oppressive systems slip out of your system.

Realize that the past of your future is the present tense
so whether omnivarian or pescatarian,
take the die out of your diet and live.
And if you lose faith, then phone a friend.
And if you F up, then never fail to think again.
because that’s the real meaning of repen-tance.
Use your pen to unpin the ideas within;
and speak salvation with every sin-tence.


-R.Gibson


Sunday, October 24, 2010

Stage Directions

Stage Directions

I place you in the fairytale in my head
and hope you don’t stray from the script:

Meet me center stage, under the spotlights
and let’s have an undressed rehearsal.

Take off your mask and tear from the scene
because my heart is tired of wearing cufflinks.

-R.Gibson

Laundromat Livin'

Laundromat Livin'

And emotions stay open
even if the door is closed
but I can't stop hopin'
my naked eye is clothed

in a clean layer
of lavender lint
to soften the stares
and scatter the scent.

And my wallet has heartburn
but my legs'd hate to retire
'cause it took twenty years to learn
how to dance like a dryer.

I mixed the lights with the darks
but still I ran out of quarters
and the piles have grown large
and this life is out of order.

In search of Lady Luck,
I always seem to find
my wishes washed up;
and tumble low dried.

-R.Gibson

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Poem: Nightfall

Nightfall




Autumn creeps into my room,
blows its breath against my body
and I fall into my bed like leaves.
I drift into a delicate dream
under waves of silky sheets,
as cars sail across asphalt seas.
Shade-sipping cicadas sizzle
until the sinking sun signals
the sky to turn black and blue.

The moon bruises the broken streets
with a bone-white hue. Nightlights ignite
fluorescent fantasies and smokescreens.
I can’t sleep. My city keeps coughing cacophony;
choking on smog, it curses the stars for sitting snug
in their solitary silence. The city-slickers are senseless;
some seek to be saved, while others singe their spirits
with suicidal shots of liquor. The slow burning liquid licks
the lungs to drown out the dissolute dogmas of day.
In darkness, the bitches and dogs come out to play.
And dogs bury sticks and bones between hips for moans
but a bitch’s dirty words will make a dog come clean.

Junkies can’t flee their freeloading fleas—so they claw
across concrete, and scratch up enough change
to float around with their monkeys on a leash;
Addicted to the scent of this citrus-tinted city
the commoners are too cold to sip vitamin c;
the spin of this cyclical system is sickening.
The food-deprived dumpster dive in anorexic alleys
that ache between bulimic buildings that binge
on bodies and vomit out souls onto the streets.

But the people choose the tools to skewer life.
So their ghosts gather on graves and gamble grief;
shootin’ craps and talkin’ more shit than sewer pipes.
The haunted howls and toxic tones infect the sky;
it sounds like the undying echo of genocide.
The mentally enslaved shackle their brains to a train
that lugs their load across an underground railroad;
but the train tracks are a spine of human bones
and Tubman stopped conducting a long, long time ago.

With another day to bruise and break; the heavens
peel off the band-aid of night. The murky mirage recedes.
People rise and open their eyes but still lose sight of their dreams.
But I’m too ran-down to rise and too distraught to dream.
I can’t sleep. Leaves fall and fall leaves.
I think, therefore I stand on the edge of my sanity
but my mind already jumped.

-R.Gibson

Thursday, October 21, 2010

SAVE MONROE PARK! SAVE OUR GREENSPACE!

What would VCU's Monroe Park campus be without Monroe Park? Imagine a1-2 year "renovation" of a 9 foot fence abruptly cutting off the park from the Richmond community. There would be no place of fellowship and restoration for the homeless in-need of help, the regular park-goers and the majority of 1st year students housed around the park. Doesn't sound considerate or ideal for the health of the community. This $6.2 Million makeover seems like a cover up for Councilman Charles Samuels' plan to weed out the already-vulnerable homeless population and cut off programs like "Food Not Bombs" that offer healthy, vegetarian meals for the homeless every weekend. Don't allow them to remove what little support is left. Save the feeding programs. Save our green space.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJiq5yzlmTk

Get more information and sign the petition here http://monroecampaign.wordpress.com/.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

"Ice Pick/Iron Grip"

"Ice Pick/Iron Grip"

You stabbed me
in the heart with a key
that unlocked something
I cannot explain. It welled up
and shattered inside. The ravine you cut
crusted over like the crevice of a sleeping eye.
I wish I could pick away the memory like a scab.
But I won't heal unless you crumble off
with friction. I cried as I held on
to the iron hands of time,
but they only entrusted
a rusty constriction.

-R.Gibson

Saturday, September 18, 2010

For Black Boys....

     So this past May, I was in a play titled "For Black Boys Who Have Considered Homicide When the Streets Were Too Much". I believe Keith Antar Mason, the playwright, really aimed to give a voice to all of the Black men who have been taught by society that expressing feelings emotions is a "female thing" and suppress so much in fear of being seen as soft or sissie. So his play can be seen as an invitation into the Black Man's Mind. It was a really challenging process that helped me tap into the well of my emotions and experience the vast terrain of my imagination. I am so grateful for my directors: Kim Exum & Crystal Johnson and my cast: Shawn Griffin, Chad Ramey & Jude Fageas for their hard work and dedication to resurrect the play from it's pages.

Here is a clip of one of my performances the cast dubbed "The Virginity Piece":


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KAmOqRhyM_0

Sunday, September 5, 2010

"hiding love"


it's fun mixing up mediums :)
marker x staple x watercolor on canvas

Sunday, August 29, 2010

poem: no place like home

"no place like home"

Mom returns home from work,
washes her hands, turns on her soap
and prepares the boys an early dinner.

Drawers and doors are shutting,
the smell of fish grease creeps up the stairs,
beneath me, the kitchen is bubbling.

Dad creaks out of his daily deathbed
takes a piss and thunders down the stairs
like the load of his life is too much to bare.

Mother calls me down to eat.
But I am trapped in a brilliant story
about a desert storm in Castle Valley.

Silverware
clanks and scrapes
across porcelain plates.

The sink water and fan keep running.
The word “Bitch!” is flung through the air
beneath me, father is erupting.

Lips tighten. Fists curl.
I want to say
something.

No I can’t come down to eat
and be trapped in that storm
of words that strike like lightning.

I am tired of acting like we are okay.
He has problems. She has problems.
And I have problems with their problems.

I have been locking my door
since I was six and still can’t stop
their words from breaking in.

So I leave it open and listen
to our picture perfect peace
shatter like a forsaken dish.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wDXfPYiLL4

download track here
http://www.mediafire.com/?g0qbrjjb2092j3j

Monday, August 23, 2010

"that day"


"that day"

you flip to a fresh page
and describe that moment
with that newfound friend
and those fluttering feelings inside:

that day, the sky was in full-gloom
until the sun fumbled through
the clouds a few hours before
dipping into the dark of the earth

you were lost in that city
at 3 o’clock that morning
‘cause those sparks lit a flame
too stubborn to die with day

you felt her focus flicker
from your eyes to your lips
you spoke softly, leaned in
and peeked while you kissed

in that park on that rock
when those sprinklers went off
and that silken stream flowed
coolly beneath your feet

you skipped across an emerald sea
as fearless as two thrown river stones
and then surrendered your doubts
to a late summer’s night dream

you write about stars fading
into a brightening blue morning
and delicately tuck in that moment
like a child on the cusp of slumber.

Friday, August 13, 2010

so i missed...

so i missed the erykah badu concert in richmond
only to compete in the national poetry slam in st paul
so i missed the corinne bailey rae concert in richmond
only to compete in the national poetry slam in st paul

here are my dedications to them both:


erykah evolve.



















tuberose in the sea.

Friday, July 30, 2010

done.

1. do not try to control them, no one can.
2. do not take over his or her responsibilities.
3. refuse to be a victim.
4. refuse to be an "enabler".
5. think more about yourself.
6. do not protect them from the consequences of his or her addiction; pain is the biggest gift.

Monday, July 26, 2010

ThatGreenGuy.

ThatGreenGuy.

His favorite
color is green.
By night he is a guard
at the Botanical Garden
and by day he shops at the Dollar Tree;
He recycles everything; it’s safe to say
that he knows what it means to save green
(his favorite color). He’s never traveled overseas,
but he likes to buy the Exotic Island Girl calendars
not for the girls but for the beaches and palm leaves, that are green
(still his favorite color). Every morning before he goes to sleep,
he walks up to the calendar, grabs a green sharpie
and places the tip in the top left corner of the date,
carefully marking an x in the spot
so that he’ll never forget
to treasure the day.
Holy Guacamole.

-R.Gibson

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

WALK ON BY

Diana Krall's beautiful cover of Dionne Warwick's song "Walk on By" (1964). Props to Burt Bacharach for writing lyrics SO heartfelt.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sxK8ghb9PU

But I cannot forget to mention the track that led me to all of this: the heavily hip-hop sampled version by Issac Hayes! The instrumental is sickkk!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U5tqAbrZeX0

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Mos Def - Umi Says

"I ain't no perfect man. I'm trynna do the best that I can with what it is I have."



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsihHoyqwWY

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Corinne Bailey Rae - Closer


aaarggggh so I have accepted the fact that I will NOT be able to see my love Corinne Bailey Rae perform at Kanawha Plaza in August... BUT it is only to compete with my team Slam Nahuatl at the National Poetry Slam in St. Paul. SO here is the video for "Closer" (my favorite off of her newest album The Sea). The video definitely compliments the 70s-disco-love-funk vibe of the song. See for yourself!



*Her songs Are You Here, Love's On Its Way, & Diving For Hearts are equally beautiful; the lyrics are elegant and profound. Pure poetry. Go buy the album and enlighten yourself, fool!


"I Need You"

A piece from the silver sketchbook
I have enjoyed filling up this summer!

"I Need You"
marker x pen

-robalu

Friday, June 25, 2010

"Medium: Oils"


"Medium: Oils"

It’s raining! It’s pouring!

Evacuate your homes!
Hurricane BP is a-coming!
Wh-where are the college students?
Oh No! College kids don’t watch the news;
they are adults but still children at heart!
My God, look at them in the park:
splashing in puddles barefoot,
catching raindrops with their tongues!

The air reeks of Mother Nature’s blood. 

The winds whip up a slick sea spray,
 the sky takes a sip, then a gulp;
levees in the clouds crack, their bellies burst open.
Oil spills down the students throats— 
the petrol poisons their purified souls.

An old man in his car saw it; 
said the children were vomiting rainbows.

It’s raining! It’s pouring!

My inner child curls up
in the comfort of my ribs,
shaking my heart like a rattle.

-Robert Gibson Jr.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Cracked

"Cracked"

The cloud of crack smoke layers
thick and sweet enough to decay
the strongest man into a yawning hole.

You are a zombie chasing a ghost;
sucking on glass chimneys, smoking out
your soul from its once fleshy home.

The man in the mirror is a mirage
and your loved ones are coin machines;
insert a few false promises, and your fix will flow.

-R.Gibson

Monday, June 21, 2010

06/21 my father's birthday

Dad's birthday is the day after Father's day;
the phone is buzzing like an insomniac insect
and all he wants to do is sleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep.

"America" by Henry Dumas


*This is one of those poems that make you say "Damn" because you respect the poet for describing just enough imagery to help you see their exact observation and understand how profound that observation was.


AMERICA

If an eagle be imprisoned
On the back of a coin
And the coin is tossed into the sky,
That coin will spin,
That coin will flutter,
But the eagle will never fly.

by Henry Dumas

Friday, June 11, 2010

Friday, June 4, 2010

amtrak insomniac

"amtrak insomniac"

the train leaves its station at 3:15 am
a mile and a half away from my home
it sings and shuffles the after storm air

dad snores like a car that won't start
he barrels around in a king size bed
it bellows under his broken in body

he fights flying monkeys in his dreams
swings like lion with the witch's broom
cusses them out in their world and mine

through my hollow bedroom door
i hear cowboys shooting on the tv
they are probably robbing a train

Thursday, May 20, 2010

THE BLAST

I was going through an old stack of burned cds, my Rob G Mixx Volumes, and I came across this track I remember vibing out to in my room back in '04, when I had just started finding the jams that kept me sane! And the song, "The Blast" by Talib Kweli and Hi-Tek had the craziest instrumental with the rhymes to match...



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=scZ0y82zGFY

Monday, May 17, 2010

such a beautiful song

Alicia Keys "Un-thinkable"



http://www.musicvideolife.com/alicia-keys-unthinkable-im-ready-video_78542e2a7.html

Sunday, May 16, 2010

grand-mammy strong-neck


something about this stands out to me... like a giraffe on stilts.

Smells like hunger

“Smells like hunger”

the robins run red-breasted
in the jagged yet bending grass
the layered greens hide the food
for the children in the trees calling:
twi twi twi
chip chip chip
twiddle di twiddle di

they are hungry

the 1 bus hauls its heaviness
back to broad street
lugging the weight
of those who carry
the weight of children
who sit in wooden cribs
calling in another language
 but crying in consistency:
wah wah wah
eh eeeh ehhhhh
wah wah waaaahhh

they are hungry

the piercing pitches
the abstract shadows
of sound i cannot see
the sun, the heat, its rays
wrap rainbows around
the out-of-focus eyelashes
that protect me from this vision

the sweat of a barking stomach
slipping into emptiness
the plastic smell of fire pit
running its doused tongue along
the roof of its upper palette

Monday, May 10, 2010

quetzal kid

the quetzal bird represents freedom in the mayan culture.
after leaving guatemala, i realized that i never saw
a quetzal bird, but through my teaching experience
it seemed like the children represented that freedom.
so i combined the beliefs in combination with some of
the techniques i used in my sketchbook down there
to create this piece "Quetzal kid".

Saturday, May 1, 2010

to be continued...

It was 3 AM
on someone’s clock,
and Time hid behind
an Oak tree in the Park.
I was arguing outside
with that trifling-ass Wind
because he stole my tears
and I wanted them back.

Right then, Winter ripped into my clothes,
ran her tongue clean over my bones;
I get jacked the one time I leave my comfort at home…
I knew it was either drying on the canvas
or lingering on the toilet seat.

So I’m cussin’ and spittin’, duckin’ and kickin’
All of a sudden, I see a shimmer in the distance.
There she was, a steady, night-colored stone
with stardust in her eyes and moonlight tied around her waist.
Believe it or not, she glowed in the snow some kinda hot.
So I told Winter and Wind, to kiss my Timbs.

And it was only her and me.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

white-throated singfisher

“White-throated singfisher"

1.

shhh
the storm air smells
like a sleeping creek
a bud cracks open
and leaks out the sun
like a broken egg
if you awaken the dew
the morning fog will file
off its fingertips and write
a poem about the pain
a soft swirling wave of shade
breaks into a curling clang
on the surface of a silver-skinned bay
it’s black wings failed, dipped,
tipped into a rain-stained race
of lusted legs and unloved limbs
dash, dark as a flash that came in last
crash, the lash of a cackling clothes rack
the rapid winds are menacingly mundane
they collect the collarbones from her frame
and toss them in a tightfisted tangle of sticks
as a placebo for their prescription bottle emptiness.

2.

a golden blaze
sings of summer
in the careless linger
of doves in a ditch
the standing stench
left from open faces
smashing at sidewalk
the clatter of collisions
the sullen sun is shooting
starlings from a bare bow
they all fall down as arrows
the bleeding light burrows
burning in her auburn eyes
reds run rich like roseblood
all until innocence is undone
twitching sight, fleeing flight
the twisting touch of needle tip
patterns pricked in the ghost print
stitching the landscape with silence.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

just bobbing around

the air bears water
for the feathers to preen
the reflections fragment
into wandering winds
the broken-boned breeze
is a bending stream
of thoughts from the voice
long nestled in me
there is no dead fruit
in my trashcan’s teeth
there are no flies
that fuck in the furrows
and flee like careless clouds
when the weather is welcoming

Monday, April 19, 2010

Unlife

The last prayer
The last tear
The last second
The last step
The last thrill
The last breath

“It is with deep regret
that I inform you
that VCU
and Richmond Police
are investigating
the death
of a student
late Sunday night…
as the result
of what appears to be
a suicide.”

It’s chill lingers
in my chest:
Uncaged
Uncaring
Uncanny
Unclear

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Postparty Depression

“Postparty Depression”

You threw the party of the century!
Lights, loose dancing and loud music
overshadows all the internal injuries.

How did your wallet get in the toaster?
Just look at your mother’s coffee table
with condensation rings beside the coaster!

Shhh, stop singing the Swollenwood Blues;
you might wake up the passed out stranger
in your bed that you forgot YOU screwed.

Head throbbing from all the confusion,
you question why the jungle juice dumped
into each crimson cup was a stagnant, stinging solution.

Friday, April 9, 2010

"The Shadow Speaks Truth"

I know those papers are fraud,
I hear the distrust in your reply.


An unfavorable feeling creeps
when you speak of Liberty.
Your tales of tyranny travel
a hallowed hall of Hypocrisy.
This land is polluted by Savages
pregnant with Vanity, perfumed in bloody Death.
And you mock me?
Well, I mock the mockeries:
The joyous Offerings, the humble Prayers,
the proud Parades, the boasting Orations
are all a deception so cold.

A thin veil hides the Guilt in your benefits.

But no, We are inhumane,
a shocking inheritance of Starlight and Stripes;
the abusing irony of the New American Slave.
Allow us a Day of Independence.
Free us from this Nation of Freedom.
And we will rest where the shackles rejoice,
where the last layer of earth reveals your gross Injustice.
We will commit sacrilege in your illuminated temples
for we know the pattern of your ways:

You will come from your Land of Despotism,
rifle-up and creep in from a distance,
searching to save our Charred Souls
from the Hell we already know.


And when your footsteps soil our soil,
we will swell from the shadows and swallow you in Silence.
This very hour is not ours, now be a slave to your own Salvation.

-R.Gibson


*This poem was inspired by an excerpt of Frederick Douglass's "Fourth of July Speech, 1852".



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SRaa3IaY-8

Sunday, April 4, 2010

ALLERGY & COLD RELIEF

she is piercings and poetry
snapping fingers like string beans
induced by words that linger
in clothes like cafeteria air
or cigarette smoke
her city has a whooping cough
just curdling phlegm and bless yous
that skip to the other room
where another girl believes
that a sneeze can revive
her sleeping heartbeat
in a graveyard of fairytales
and happy endings
one flatline brushes off
the bugs and bone dust
to bend back into meaning

Monday, February 1, 2010

First Assignment for Tin Salamunic's Design Class

"What is Design?"

     I believe that design is a part of everything around me: the alarm clock that wakes me in the morning, the label that hugs my bottle of orange juice, the chair that supports my body and disperses my weight to the ground, the golden lamp that stands tall on my desk, the room I come back to after the day is done, and the laptop computer I type this paper on. Every material thing that I am dependent on began as an idea and was designed by someone who intrinsically brought it to life. In the Bible, it is taught that God created the Heavens and the Earth. In that sense, God is the Supreme Artist, and all of the universe and it's entrails are apart of God's grand design. Within the range of phenomena I have witnessed on this planet, design begins with Nature. The tectonic plates of the Earth's crust, the cycle of the seasons, the anatomy of plants, and the genetic makeup of animals & human beings, all combine to compose the living, breathing Design of Nature.
     Design in relation to architecture, has been synonymous with humanity on Earth. Each time-weathered block of the Great Pyramids in Egypt, the Doric columns of the Parthenon in Greece, the  Gregorian style White House in Washington DC, the Eiffel Tower of France, the Guggenheim Museum of New York, the Frank Lloyd Wright houses, the bulging domes of the Taj Mahal in India, the astonishing newly renovated Cary Street Gym, and the Franklin Terrace Building are all marvels of architecture that shape the world around me. Design is aesthetically the thought, the action and the result.
     The branch of fashion design has been with me ever since I thought I had fashion sense. Back before I knew how to dress myself, my parents would be the ones who picked out my clothes. Looking back on my baby pictures, I was a hip youngster with my high-top fade haircut, my blue corduroy Osh-Kosh overalls, and my colorful selection of dress shirts. From elementary school to the middle of high school, I was heavily peer-pressured and influenced by the fads of that day. When it came to fashion, I found myself struggling to fit the styles:  either I dressed like a thug (long colored or white tee shirts, a pair of shoes to match each color, baggy jeans, and fitted baseball cap) or like a “preppy white boy”(extra-snug polo shirt, some moccasins, and fitted straight leg jeans).
     My concept of fashion was very limited to what my peers opinions were but after my 2nd year in high school I noticed that buying more clothes was getting expensive and that most people didn't care about what they wore. And being that I fit the “artist” stereotype, I began to experiment with various color schemes in my wardrobe. To my surprise, nobody condemned me for wearing an outfit like: a black logo tee, blue jeans and red shoes. To this day I am still in awe. I don't quite understand how random articles of clothing can work together in agreement, but being at Virginia Commonwealth University I see it everyday. Design is more than just matching clothes by color; it is a product of incessant experimentation and alchemy.
     I have come to believe that design is the sea of controlled chaos that people knowingly and unknowingly submerge themselves in on a daily basis. As a Communication Artist, I hope to learn more of Design beyond its dictionary definition. I want to be able to see it the advertisements tattooed across the places I go, I want to hear its genius in the music and poetry of our times, I want to taste it at that quaint restaurant hidden in the quiet of Richmond, I want to think it when I am kicking out a thumbnail sketch for a future piece of work, I want to feel it in the steaming lights of the galleries of First Fridays, and I want to live it until my rusty soul is done with my body and checks out into the Great Art Studio in the sky.

-Robert Gibson Jr.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Aerodynamic - Daft Punk

This is a funky jam. Get your butter knife and toast.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=14xgbeHsJXI

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

i am in love with this woman...







her sophomore album "the sea" will be released in early february of 2010, what an excellent birthday gift for me!