The Water


The water heals
so, I swim deep

the depth of it all
just seems so out of reach

so I fetch, dig deep in my memory
the spirits rise, so again I can see

at the bottom of the ocean
in Labadi beach
The horses, they come for me

I am the master of this ceremony
new life, new mind
3 dollars and 6 dimes
Cause the woman that knows something,
knows that she knows nothing at all

-by Shila Iris

Men despise what they do not understand…


… and so do women.

Do not sit and frown at her
your belief system
is not
to her.
Do not assume
she is something that she is not,
your way of living makes her feel,
Would you rather she die?
did you ask her if she was happy,
are you more concerned with converting her,
into you?

Play chess with a king, do you see? I am in the front seat, isn't that how it is supposed to be?

Play chess with a king, do you see? I am in the front seat, isn’t that how it’s supposed to be? You should find some balance, so that we can drink, and rise to your occasion, he only rises to my persuasion. I am not hunting him down, because he comes. This is, Us. And it can be you too, but you gotta stop fighting the Truth. I am not a mistress, I’m a Queen. Phenomenal. I am shedding those things that gave me insomnia. I am reborn. Cause life is about living, and not hiding. Life is about smiling, and striving, to find, your magic.

You condemn on hearsay evidence alone, your sins increase. -Nubian Proverb

Your eurocentric perspectives gave birth to chaos. People of Afrikan descent adopted these beliefs because they were forced to. Generations later, they hate themselves because you told them to hate themselves, and you killed those who didn’t subscribe to the extermination of nubian-kush greatness. Nonetheless, I do not hate myself. I embrace the ALL, even you. But do not tell me, that my spirit should be like yours, because you are asking me to believe in you as my God, and not me. How disrespectful. I admire all faces, but I do not praise you over me. Do you praise me over you? I would hope, that you believed in yourself. So…

Eurocentrism is a geographical fiction that flattens the cultural diversity of even Europe itself. Stop imposing your beliefs on people. Your system dumbs me down- straight jacket style. Today, I’m not having it.

We strive for different things, you and I, but I am not offended. I respect all that you are, and I hope that you are happy, being exactly who God made you- nothing altered, nothing false. Be true. Your lips. Your smile. Your color. Your lisp. Love it. Stop changing you (and pull up your damn pants!).

This is some Afrikan proverb for you, because, I love you. 

Peace and blessings manifest with every lesson learned,

Shila Iris

Shila Iris

Stop looking at me sideways and embrace who I am. I made a decision to be this way. I live this way. I am fully committed to the truth. Not some lie, that I have to validate. You can love me. I love you already.

I recognize you…


I want to see you.

Know your voice.

Recognize you when you
first come ’round the corner.

Sense your scent when I come
into a room you’ve just left…”




I Live You

Our spirits speak.

From where you are
to where I am,
I can hear your heart,
Sometimes over the loudness of my own
I lay down,
When I can,
I give in, to the sound of your resounding  love.

Like a gong, like a drum,
the pulse penetrates
my skin,
closest to kin,
I touch the surfaces of your existence,
decoding the braille,
the bumps,
I exhale,
Life is so mystical.
Breathing, I inhale,
the essence.

Languages, unknown
I hear, in my dreams.
ancient mysteries.
In my mind,
I contrive,
I find,
myself succumbing to
the caress of fingers,
of stories,
of memories.
of things,
so true.
Vivid answers,
vivid truths.   – shila iris 

This article was originally published here.

MORE POETRY by Shila Iris





Bullet Proof Soul


Waiting for the verdict to be read, my heart became heavy. I didn’t want to seem negative, but the results seemed obvious. Predictable. Our lives are often devalued. We are treated as less than human, while marksmen point their artillery at our skulls… we have grown BULLET PROOF SOULS, to survive. In this land of the free, home of the brave or home of the [slave]? In times of distress, I have to lift myself. So let’s Get Lifted in the music. Today, I choose, Sade. Her voice soothes me and reminds me of how powerful I am. We are powerful. I am goddess soul, floating in a dimension, above this, this state of chaos. We will wake up. And you will watch us…

… and although the decision made in Cleveland today was not surprising at all, it still hit me like a slow bullet. My mind, my heart, my soul, goes out to my people. We suffer. But. We are the strongest alive. When there was nothing to prove, my ancestors proved it. When there was no way to move, my ancestors created, innovated. And so will we. Dig this poetry…

THE lyrics of SADE…

I was so in love with you
You rarely see a love that’s true
Wasn’t that enough for you
Wasn’t that enough for you
I would climb a mountain
I wouldn’t want to see you fall
Rock climb for you
And give you a reason for it all

You kept on thinking
You were the only one
Too busy thinking
Love is a gun

Hit me like a slow bullet 
Like a slow bullet
It took me some time to realise it

You keep on thinking
You were the only one
Too busy thinking
Love is a gun

I know the end before
The story’s been told
It’s not that complicated
But you’re gonna need a bullet proof soul

You keep on thinking
You were the only one
Too busy thinking
Love is a gun

I know the end before
The story’s been told
It’s not that complicated
But you’re gonna need a bullet proof soul

You were trigger happy baby
You never warned me let me free
It’s not that complicated
But you’re going to need a bullet proof soul
Think you got it but you got all the trouble you need
I came in like a lamb
But I intend to leave like a lion

It hit me like a slow bullet
It hit me like a slow bullet

-I am Shila, thank you for reading.

peace and blessings manifest with every LESSON learned. I’ve been hit with bullets for almost 2 years now. The final shot taken at my heart. I bled. From September to December. My heart sank. My mind blank. It took a lot for me to come alive, again. I have been so determined not to find my happiness and worth in the smile of another. The foundation of my worth is ME. I am always happy to be alone. In those moments, my soul is well fed. We all have to learn. I have. Peace.


It’s So Easy to Love Her, Selah!


Since the first time I heard her voice, I have been in love with the sound of her. I don’t care how she looks, or how she wears her hair. I don’t care how crazy they say she is, or how many kids, I just love to hear her speak. I see myself reflected in her eyes, and I get weak. Her art is ministry. Her words are from the most high, she is god. And sometimes, I kneal, for, I am thankful for the gift of her experiences, revealed, through her poetic verses, Lauryn Hill… I hear you, as your soul transitions into happiness, keep blessing the best of us. I hear my ancestors speak through you, triumphant woman of the moon, peace to you.

It’s national poetry month ya’ll… Selah… and then he came…

Nothing can be done against the truth
No matter how we remain in denial, yeah
Wasting time, replacing time
With each empty excuse
But that’ll only work a little while…

Coping with despair
Knowing you’re not there
Ashamed to just admit I’ve been a fool
So I blame it on the sun
Run away from everyone
Hoping to escape this ridicule

Trapped in misery
Wrapped so miserably in this deception I wear it like a skin
Dying to maintain, oh I keep trying to explain
A heart that never loved me to begin

Oh I’m such a mess, I have no choice but to confess
That I’ve been desperately trying to belong
Lying to myself and everybody else
Refusing to admit my right was wrong

And then he came, selah
Oh and it means praise and meditation
And then he came, selah
Oh and it means, did ya think about that
And then he came, selah
Oh and it means, praise and meditation
And then he came, selah
Oh and it means that it is sieved

How beautiful his fruits, still in denial of its roots
My guilty heart behaved so foolishly
This treason from within that reasons with my sin
Won’t be happy til it sees the death of me

Selfishly addicted to a life that I’ve depicted
Conflicted cause it’s not reality
Oh what’s left of me, I beg you desperately,
Cause me to agree but what I know is best for me

Please save me from myself
I need you, save me from myself
Please save me from myself so I can heal

The choices that I make, oh have been nothing but mistakes
What a wasted use of space
Should I die before I wake?
In all of my religion, I’ve fortified this prison
Obligated to obey the demands of bad decision

Please save me from myself
I need you to save me from myself
Please save me from myself so I can heal

And then he came, selah
Oh and it means praise and meditation
And then he came, selah
Oh and it means did ya think about that
And then he came, selah
Oh and it means meditation
And then he came, selah
Oh and it means that it is sealed

And then he came
And then he came, then he came, then he came
And then he
And then he came



P.S. Nothing can be done against the truth.

Are You Ready for Tonight? Soundtrack by Yasiin Bey & Res


In a trance in the this space… CALMING

Dreamless sleep
refreshing, sometimes
not to think
Just lay, in peace
and listen to the sound of my heart beating
Mind free of matter
Body free of desire
All I have is   ______
In this space,
I am wicked, spinning,
three sheets to the wind
In this bed,
on the clouds,
brown linens, the earth
gathering my wetness
I am breathing in,
exhaling, stretching,
Opening my eyes,
I see
Together, we climb into the night


Are you ready?

People climbed into the night like space suits

People stepped into the night like moon boots
Marching like moon troops
In their zoot colored zoot suits

People climbed into the night like cool wells
Shiney bottles in their hands
Drinking their new selves
They say it’s their true selves

People climbed up in the night like green trees
They were hanging from the night like green leaves
Buzzing like queen bees

People climbed into the night like space suits
People stomped inside the night
Stomping and stomping and stomping and stomping and stomping

Where are they going?
What’s the rush?
Everybody in the place was so out of touch

Night-time is when the things get heavy
You feel alone and you want somebody
Loneliness whispers desperate measures
And your frantic all by yourself

Night-time is when the things get heavy
You feel alone and you want somebody
Loneliness whispers desperate measures
Baby don’t make no fast moves
Baby don’t make no fast moves
Baby don’t make no fast moves
Baby don’t make no fast moves- Tonight

La La La [humming…]

People stomped inside the night
Let me climb into the night…
Let me climb…
[vamp to fade]

i am S hi la

Blessed up!

I believe in love at first sight…


… if you must harness the sunshine
and hold the air in your hands,
fairy tales and miracles are splendid
If you’re planting seeds and
watering them with the right things,
hopeless romanticism is an experience,
that leads, to growth
But you musn’t be surprised when someone on the other side
of the world flicks the light switch
and the season is over.

Energy is a whirlwind waiting for you to walk in,
it may be fate or coincidence, you spin

I believe in love manifesting itself in bodies from our dreams
Now, are you ready to face reality?


________________ I want to get to know you, and you need to get to know me. That means we can choose to see one another when we can, but don’t feel obligated. Let’s have a free flow mind dance. I believe in liberation. I believe in evolution. If we ever decide to go beyond, let it be because we trust and respect one another and because we arrived, naturally, at a place, where we both want to be. ________________

I am learning so many things about real human emotions. I was taught to put my love in a box, but it’s not how I want to love anyone and it is not how I want anyone to love me. I have discovered that I am not interested in a love filled with forevers and nevers. Anything is possible when you really love someone. I believe in LIONHEART LOVE where we don’t need to pretend or make a show. WE HAVE NOTHING TO PROVE. We are NOT afraid of one another. We know each other well. We accept the flaws and all. 

LOVE IS MUTUAL. I feel like the healthiest loving is reciprocal. The Universe has a tendency to align us with the right people when we are righteous and ready. You will know when you arrive at this type of love because it will feel right. It will be more than infatuation or physical stimulation. You will be able to look into each other’s eyes and know. It is a deep experience- to grow with someone and go through trials with them. Love is earned, not something that should be given so freely. Lot’s of people throw it around, but I say, please don’t misuse it!

Growing a real love could take seasons! But don’t be intimidated by this. Have faith, patience, and fun! A REAL love has to stand the test of time. You won’t know how much you love someone until you have to go through things with them. The people that I love are those who stood by me throughout the years. It took 15 years for me to know that I really loved my best friend! 10 years for me to trust my college sisters. Imagine that. We made all types of mistakes, but we still had each other’s backs. I know that it is pure because we never had to cross anyone for our love to manifest. It has always been a good thing.

I don’t want to rush or anticipate it
It’s much more interesting when we just let it be
We connect our personalities and histories,
call it chemistry
Hasty declarations can ruin a good thing
just open your heart to me…

Don’t declare love out of fear. Would you rather have the security of a lie, someone telling you what you want to hear? Or the truth?

I want a beautiful becoming, an awakening, where I don’t know what’s going to happen.

If you’re scared that you’re losing control then yes, say you love me! Do you want to be in a relationship because you’re afraid of losing me or do you want the real thing? Let life happen. Love yourself.

I care for you. I admire you. I want to be around you. I want you. Those are things that I’ll believe, nothing prematurely. It’s only right that I, we, take the time to season our greens, let nature be. Peace. This woman said it best:

“Just because I tell you I love you, don’t mean that I do.”
-Erykah Badu

Listen to every lyric if you desire my tenderness. 🙂

I am so good at being a QueenAquarius!

P.S. Let’s fly to the Bahamas!

I’m smiling today because my heart is warm with desire.


Karmatic Life Explosions


Karma3Monday morning anxieties,
washed away
visions of forever,
the comprehension of humanity,
living contradictions,
fly away.
no judgment of before, or after
new stories, begin

living on the path of the sun
i orbit
my heart beats to
the length and rhythm of day and night

seasons change
shape and speed, rotation leads

the past is gone,
the future, unpredictable,
the moment is now.

the love that I grew for you is 360
energy, recycled,
i don’t know what to do.
but the thought doesn’t make me blue,
my heart goes out to you.

degrees from experience,
and karmatic life explosions
there is no equation,
it’s all in persuasion.
which mountain do you stand on?
outlook and perspective
lost emphasis in translation

did they forget that there is
no Always, no Never
It’s Possibly, Maybe.
promises turn shady

the lava from volcanic eruptions
bring me closer to my Maker,
i am the Creator.
This side of the moon,
life is worth living.
free your mind
and the rest, will follow.      -by shilairis

ˈkärmə/  > informal
  • destiny or fate, following as effect from cause.
peace and love,
Queen OSiRis


I am Eclipsing


“Don’t be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth.”  – RumiEclipse

i am the moon, eclipsing

i was not waiting in darkness for you to bring me light,
my world was already bright
but I am obliged that you have added to my majesties
with simple acts of faith

teacher, no preacher
lover, no hate
brother, no enemy
adventure, no drama
truth, no contradiction

allegiance, no opposition
bravery, no blame
harmony, no aversion
human, as in nature.

that’s what you are.
A mariner.

I am not blinded by your light,

i can see.
i can see my mistakes.
i can see, I am great.


you are free.
And you make me,
want to be,

an explorer.

of myself,
of my individual wealth.

thank you for unleashing,
this dreamer inside of me.

i am the moon, eclipsing

spinning on the earths’ axis
my day, my night, is mine.

moth to a flame,
my experience, i claim

rising, OsiRis.
the sun belongs to me,

me, myself, and I,
my holy Trinity.

by shila iris

NatureToday, I am inspired by my dreams of Khem. I feel like I was there. Explore.

Queen OSiRis



Outfit of the Day…


This is such a beautiful outfit, befitting of a Queen. I can definitely see myself in it.

The pose to the right is just so, … what can I say other than, yes! It reminds me so much of my journey, searching for balance, inside of me. Ma’at.

Peace and love. – Shila Iris

Book of the Day…


Ancient Dreams & Tantric Wisdom… the show


COME CHECK out the band, Intercourse the Collective, this FRIDAY, JUNE 13 AT LIL’ AFRICA AKA THE KITCHEN located at 6816 Superior Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44103.


This show will feature myself and my wonderful playmates- vocalist: RaShimba WildBloom, Drummer: Ali Boyd, Keyboard Player: Egan Ammerman, and the Digital Griot: jAfterDark. We will be doing a special tribute to the late Rayshawn Armstrong who was a well-known Cleveland poet and community driven activist. Thank you to poet, Bianca Michelle and artist, Latoya Kent for their participation in this show. Peace and love! See you there.

shila iris aka Queen 

Not Loving the Lies… a poetic experience


Deep and Dope 1

Deep and Dope 2

Deep and Dope 3 Deep and Dope 4

Just wanted to share some poetry.

As I listen and listen to the stories of my acquaintances, I am realizing that people are saying the same things and telling the same lies. I am trying to express that here. I hear this so much: “I don’t want to hurt anyone.” Well, your choice to withhold information will lead to pain. That is the way that cookie crumbles. We have to start being wiser about the truth. You may think you have your lies under control, but guess what. Not really.

… but I don’t want to judge. Smiling.


Lovin Oprah These Days… She Can Rock an Afro!


This is Oprah on the cover of the September 2013 issue of The Oprah Magazine. I am really digging her boldness these days. She is fun, open, and risky! That is a great way for a woman of her age to be- ageless at heart! The point of it all: Tressed to Impress, all about the hair.  I really just think that she is visually showing what it feels like to experiment with and to explore hair. I love the textured fro. Beyonce’s stylist allowed her to borrow it and it weighs in at 3.5 lbs. Wow! It is reminiscent of Chaka Khan, Diana Ross, and Ms. Badu:

Oprah says that she wish this wig were her own hair. I love it! She talks about hair because she wants to know why it has such a hold on women. I agree. Oddly, I asked my friend yesterday what he thought about my hair over the phone. I dyed my hair and the roots had begun to show and I wanted to know what he thought about that. He said to me: you are focusing too much on it! You have good taste and it’s beautiful any way you wear it. I believed him. He isn’t shallow at all (but he cannot stand weave!). I could come out any way that I pleased and he would not care. Gotta love a good friend! This is the biggest my hair has been. I only wore it like this for a photo shoot. I couldn’t handle it the next day day. The Afro pics were of me in Vegas at an NBA party! It was so much fun!

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Well, I believe that the hair/head is a crown and it should be cared for with love, but, if it becomes consuming then think about a cut! For me, hair is most beautiful in its natural texture. Not chemically processed or dyed. What you were born with is what you must love. Everything else is just temporary decoration. Colors and weaves should not define a woman. We must show our own hair and love it. I love my bush. Do you?

The Kush Queen aka Queen Duafe aka Shila Iris aka ishilai aka The Fifth Element for African Essence Blog