Earth Mothers Chronicles: Earth Tremors


There is a rumble in Hardliner’s earth
Oya is on the move – again
Whipping and wielding dem soulful change winds of hers
In the midst of Hardliner’s backbone-breaking – James Brown sweating
All holy-ghost praising earth tilling exercise
Up until then – sista gurl was feeling comfortable
Within herself to say “and it was very good”
On the account that her earth looked
And felt a whole lot better
But Oya thought a little supernatural tilling was in order
Now the pungent aroma of her newly turned over earth
Assails her nostrils – thank-you-very-much Ms. Oya

Though Hardliner can’t hold the sarcasm for too long
As a wave of giddiness hits her due to the increasingly
Violent tremors rocking her earth
Like what the hell does she have to do?
Sweat blood before she can see her way clear
Through her messy life?

Transformation aint ever what it seems
Don’t get too comfortable Baby

Almah materialises – garbed in flowing red robes
And wielding her straight talk

Well let’s just get down to business shall we
Hardliner utters – just a bit surly

Ms. Almah does not exactly embody Grace like Nanna
There is a power that this earth mother carries
A unique cocktail of confidence – passion – courage
And Mt. Kilimanjaro strength

Like can you move in more gentle – graceful strides
As you can see – Oya is shaking up my earth today
The both of yall – together – gats me feeling like roadkill

Chile dig deep for courage and strut purpose
This aint the time to walk gingerly
So what – Oya has done some extra tilling of your earth
Thank her for her service and keep it movin’
If you want to manifest your purpose
You have to go through some things
Do what you have to do – blood sweating included

Hardliner massages her earlobes
She’ll do dayum near anything to
Settle the giddiness and nausea jacking her up
From this here turbulence

Woosah – moosah – gibberish
Almah dismisses with the wave of her hand
Chile plant your feet in your rejuvenated soil
And roll with your tremors – do not resist them

So this is what the place of doing feels like
Hardliner observes as she digs her feet into her earth
All the while admitting that it is soothing
Despite the crazy tremors
It gon take sista a little while to acclimatise to
This here situation cause…

When is the woman in you
Going to be present with the wife in you?

Ms. Almah interjects her thought process
Totally changing the flow in the situation – in a quick silver flash
Which leaves Hardliner searching for breaths
Suddenly Almah is pulling a T.D. Jakes on her


Little girl you chose to play this grown woman’s game
When is the woman going to take over?
And where is the wife in all of this?

Almah has a determined gleam in her eyes

To tell you the truth Almah
I don’t know where that woman is
Looking back on her situation
Hardliner admits that she has been so preoccupied
With defining what it means to be a woman –
Separate from being a wife
That she never once thought they had to co-exist
And to be more precise – she kinda banished
That heffa from being any part of her womanhood
Dang – this shit is profound

So in essence the wife is AWOL
Hardliner’s earth rumbles and roars
As Almah unleashes her brand of brass tacks wisdom
Where is she Baby?
Who is she?
Your marriage woes will continue until
You deal with your funky situation
What does being a wife mean to you?
And when you come to that understanding
You will clearly know what are your expectations of marriage

Hardliner takes a deep breath
Almah’s brass tacks wisdom gon be the death of her
Well wife equals Snow White
Prissily catering to her man’s every need
A powerless state

That is dire chile
No wonder you are struggling
Do any of these perceptions fit you?

Well she tries so hard to go against the grain
Of these perceptions
She has made it a point to tell her lion
That she is not Betty Crocker or June Clever
And she aint gon be subservient to no man
Just to appease his ego
Cause a sista has come to know herself
Aint no man gon mop the floor with her – Hardliner stops her flow
Realising that she Went somewhere else for a minute
O.K she gats issues
But hey – wifey makes her feel uncomfortable
The expectation for her to fall in line
With being a – a – well – dang
Hardliner does not really know
She pauses to take in this moment then asks herself
What is it that a wife does?
Is she there to support her mate?
Wash and cook hard food for him
Take care of his children
Oh yeh – and pass the shit on a regular
But what about her?
What if she don’t like that set up
Cause Hardliner aint feeling it – at all

Have you ever asked your husband
What are his expectations of you in your marriage?

Almah asks – quite poised on Hardliner’s turbulent earth

No – Hardliner answers truthfully

And what are your expectations Baby
If you don’t like your perceptions of a wife
Change it – redefine it
But be willing to be open to changing your heart
There is nothing wrong in listening to
The counsel of your husband or doing things to uplift his spirit
And you need that too
Have you told him what are your expectations of him?
That he does not have to be your daddy – Prince Charming
Or any other hot Romeo you have cooked up in your head
Come out of your self-centred world Hardliner
This aint about you
Your marriage aint about you

Dang – Ms. Almah is the truth
Blunt and unyielding
Bearing all this truth in mind
Hardliner feels like she put the cart before the horse
In signing the marriage contract
Without reading the fine print
She looks at all her married sista friends
How do they reconcile with a flawed husband
Cause they all go through crap one way or another
What keeps them married?
And it is more than just pet peeves here
The farting – belching and not helping with
The house keeping more is a standard thing with men
But what keeps a woman with a man who cheats
Who aint on the real with his money
Whose extracurricular activities take precedence
Over his family life
Who gambles his money away and the family goes without

But are these women truly present in their marriages
Or have the wives in them gon AWOL too?

Almah asks – levelling a reflective stare at Hardliner
That makes sista gurl shift uncomfortably

Maybe you need to come outside of your comfort zone
To speak openly with your sista friends

She can’t tell them all her business
Hardliner rejects this counsel instinctively

You learn about yourself by sharing yourself with others
It makes no sense knowing who your friends are
And knowing that they have your back
If you cannot go to them when your skies are falling
What is the purpose of a good close sista friend
If you cannot say hey – I am dealing with something
At the moment – lend me an ear
It shows that you are willing to operate in
A vulnerable space by sharing your story
You have friends you could trust Baby
Lean on them – everybody needs to be lifted
You are not weak for acknowledging that you do

Hardliner is wary
All this earth shaking and quaking
Is really change ripping through her marriage
But sista also gats change ripping through
Her work environment and career too
Which means that Hardliner has to be constantly
Busting a James Brown funky sweat
From backbreaking work – tilling her earth
So when she gon start planting?
She was told that it was gon be some time soon
Almah fixes her an intimidating stare which
Gradually softens into a smile
Hardliner comes to the answer herself
It is one of those when you need to know
You will know type of situation isn’t it?

You are on God’s business
You will plant when he deems it appropriate
And sometimes chile – while you are planting
You will be tilling
So is the order of life

Aint that the truth? – Hardliner concurs
Her head is filled with unanswered questions
Like how is she gon integrate the woman
In her with the wife she has exiled
And who she still feels some kinda way towards

Dang – working from the ground up – again
How many ti…

Don’t ask baby
Almah cuts her off
You don’t want the headache
That may result from knowing
Just do what you have to do

Even if it means sweating blood
Hardliner finishes sarcastically

Ahhh – but then joy cometh in the morning


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