Written by James Tevaga
NZ Born of Samoan descent
N: New Stories
I have been writing poetry for the last two years, I enjoy every rhyme that I think of, every metaphor that comes to my head!! Putting words together is something that I find very interesting and challenging as well. When I write, I use everything that I have encountered or things that have influence my way of life. I don’t really watch or read spoken word poetry that much because I don’t want to imitate a poet, I rather focus on my own material and be authentic. A major influence of my poetry comes from the music that I listen to which is hip hop. I listen to artists such as lil yachty, Slim Jesus and riff raff (hahahaha) they suck so much!!! Seriously, I listen to artists like Common, Rakim, Nas, Mos Def (Yasiin Bey), Blackstar, Gangstar, the Fugees and Ne-Yo (there are many more but it is such a long list). The reason why I listen to these artists because they make me contemplate on life and other things as well. Just for fun, I would unpack their lyrics and understand what they are trying to portray or say. I can go on and on about hip-hop but I know you have a life and want to do many other things, so I am just going to stop talking about hip-hop.
Growing up, all I did was play footy, eat, church and train but never thought that I will call myself a wordsmith or even a poet. I remembered the first poem that I wrote, it was about a girl that I liked and I wrote it in my head, it sounds weird… hahahahahaha, it took me about half an hour to write. The poem itself consisted of one liners and I portrayed the girl as love! I always tell people that the poem is a like! poem not a love! poem.....hahahaha (but really). I shared the piece at the open mic at equippers church (my home church) and that’s when I knew that poetry was an outlet that I could use to express my thoughts and opinions.
Currently, I am a part of the Outspoken Poetry Collective which is based at Equippers Church. The Outspoken is a Christian based collective. This collective, consists of many talented wordsmiths who have the ability to tell stories, or voice their opinions with creative twists and realism. I am so blessed to be able to work with great people who are keen to tell their own story.
The best way to end this piece is with a couple of poems. I hope you enjoyed reading my piece. Thank you, Emmaline and Dawn for allowing me to write this piece. Take care, spike your hair. One love!!
Will I ever get to tell love face to face that I don’t care what’s on her face, she looks beautiful regardless what’s on her face, whether it will be that pimple or that mole. Because she does not need make-up at all
Will I ever get to tell love that face to face that she makes my heart have a race
Will I ever get to tell love, hey we should enter the amazing race.
Will I ever get to tell love that I can be her Augustus waters and she could be my hazel grace
Will I ever get to tell love that her eyes grab my attention very quickly, very rapidly, very instantly
Will I ever get to tell love that her long black beautiful hair suits her face perfectly?
Will I ever get to tell love that her walk is so elegant that her stride reminds me of a gazelle being chased through the Serengeti by a cheetah
Will I ever get to tell love that ‘I’ve Been love lost since the day that I met yah’
Will I ever get to tell love that every time she walks by me, I get nervous, I get the tingles like I’m eating pringles.
Will I ever tell love that hey I’m here ready to mingle!
Will I ever get to tell love that I don’t care about her exterior beauty but I care about her interior beauty.
Will I ever get to tell love that I don’t care about her past but I care about her present and future
Wlll I ever get to tell love that I don’t care about her imperfections because nobody’s perfect
Will I ever get to tell love that if she is looking for a man……………I’m right here waiting with a game plan
Will I ever get to tell love that if she needs a man to fight her battles, I’m here. I can be her knight in shining armour, I can be her George st-pierre and be her under armour
Will I ever get to tell love that I know that I’m not the guy that she usually goes for but give me a chance and I will show love what I can do.
Will I ever get to tell love that I can serenade her like Brian mcknight and I would always start back at one
Will I ever get to tell love that every time she smiles it lights up my world
Will I ever to tell love to keep on smiling.
Will I ever get to tell love that she looks beautiful every day, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Will I ever get to tell love that someday I will be her man
Will I ever get to dig up the confidence to go up to her out and ask her on date but wait, im too scared plus I got no money in my wallet mate
Will I ever get to hold hands with love and whisper cute remarks to her, telling her that her laugh is adorable.
Will I ever get to be that man that will sweep love off her feet
Will I ever get to say this to love. Did it hurt, when you fell out of heaven
Will I ever get to tell love that life is not the amount of breaths you take it’s the moments that take your breath away
Will I ever get to tell love that I know that there other guys chasing her and I know that I’m coming dead last but there’s a saying it’s not how you start it’s how finish and I always finish strong.
Will I ever get to meet love’s parents and tell them that they have raised a beautiful young lady
Will I ever get to pick love up when she is feeling sad
Will I ever get to tell her that she looks very sexy when she gets mad
Will I ever be able to tell if love if she ever feels lonely all she has to do is call up and I will be like wiz khalifa and roll up
Will I ever get to show her that I am a gentleman and I will treat her with the utmost respect, I will open doors for her and I will do more for her.
Will I ever get to tell love that I am like ne-yo and she could be my sexy love
Will I ever get to tell love that she has that nurturing side to her which is common among all mothers
Will I ever get to tell my mother that I have found love
Will I ever get to a drink a fine glass of wine with love toast and say never lie, steal, cheat or drink. But if you must lie, lie in the arms of the one you love. If you must steal away from bad company. If you must cheat, cheat death. And if you must drink, drink in the moments that take your breath away…
People say good things will come to people who wait patiently, however better things come to people who chase
I will chase!
A Grounded Letter
A Grounded letter
Hey bro. I hope everything is well with you uce, I remembered our conversation that we had in the weekend, I did not know if your were a bit tipsy. As your lil cousin, I never thought you would open up to melike that before
You said this to me “James how come you don’t drink, smoke or drugs, then you asked me this question. What makes you so grounded James?
I did not get to answer your question but I hope this letter will answer it
What makes me grounded is seeing my people go through so much just so they can get by or even make ends meet
What makes me grounded is seeing people on the street pulling out a bk cup and asking for loose change or food
What makes me grounded is the man above keeping me rooted with this beautiful and elegant garden he calls earth
What makes me grounded is making my parents proud of me, telling everyone that their son is doing something with his life, making a difference.....making an impact on this world that we live in
What makes me grounded is being able to know where I am going in life
What makes me grounded is being able to show to the world what I have to offer as a poet and a person because I believe that I can change a persons life with my voice and words.
I remembered this Awkward moment occurred when you were saying that your proud of me and then you said “James are u not tempted by your footy mates to have a pint or two. “
then you gradually dug up the courage to ask me another question.... Doesn’t society influence you personally?
This is my response to that question of yours
Society does not have a death grip on my nuts. I don’t do what society does....I do what I think it is right and I will fight and combat any negativity that is standing in my way. People tend to fellow each other until the point where they are going around in circles, people tend to follow the latest trends, people tend to follow the crowd. But for your lil cousin I don’t follow people because they would walk around aimlesslyI don’t follow I trends because I am a trend setter. I don’t like to follow the crowd, I’m like Eric b and Rakim… I move the crowd.
Because I’m thinking of a master plan
Because I’m thinking of a master plan
Because I’m thinking of a master plan
Because One of the greatest NFL line-backers by the name of Ray Lewis said this to me through a computer screen “whatever the crowd is doing you find your way doing the opposite “ Ifound my opposite and My opposite is to become the man that god wants me to be. Uce I want u to look around at our family the majority of them have fallen into those stereotypes....that society as perpetrated over us. I want to be an example for our family and I refuse to fall and has God as my witness I will not fall, I will ball because I am a big baller.....shot caller!!
Uce, you look at me thinking my life is like a portrait of Mona Lisa, Going to church, attending University and living life as straight as I can but remember the portrait of Mona Lisa has mistakes as well and my portrait has many mistakes that I wish I could take back but I can’t because that’s how life works, you learn from your mistakes and become a better man for yourself, a better man for your family but most importantly a better man for your son, i want him to look at his father and say daddy I look up to you as man of love, respect and kindness, one day I want to be just like you.
This letter I wrote for you my uce. A grounded letter just for you
Your cousin full of love and smiles