If I could love her, could she forgive me for her bondage?
I don't remember any of them having any rhythm. Not a single one.
They were just on display, vaguely keeping time to foreign music. They would have moved differently if there was something that sounded more like home blasting through the speakers.
But there they were, on stage for me to see. Young bodies of various shapes, clad in ill-fitting lingerie; young bodies heavily perfumed to mask their musk; young bodies smuggled, were now for rent.
I try to imagine the conversations that led them that club. What lies were they told? Who sold them out? Was this arrangement what they expected it to be? Was this the price they were willing to pay for a chance to make it to the promised land?
The music in the club was for me; it was out of context, sometimes gangsta as fuck. That they tried to dance to it was absurd.
I came from slaves, now I sat, an abettor of slavery.
I was the distinguished gentlemen in the room, inspecting flesh for its fitness to the task. They moved; I judged and drank.
Could love emerge from such a dark place?
Love was her only hope. Breath-taking beauty with sad eyes, she tried to sell love in exchange for a fresh start.
If I could love them...if I could love her, could she forgive me for her bondage?
The scene felt like an alternate reality. The only thing that anchored the experience to earth was the music.
As dark as the scene was there were authentic moments of shared joy. That's how I saw it at the time at least. But how could I know; maybe hers was a sadness without reprieve.
Even if the girls...the girl, didn't know how to move to the music, sometimes it moved her. And that moved me.
It was in the music that both enslaver and enslaved found, for the briefest of moments, escape and humanity.
If you ever find yourself in a place this dark, I hope you recognize it for what it is and quickly reconnect with your humanity.
Today's playlist starts with a bounce reminiscent of the early 1990's. A reinterpretation plays gangsta lyrics against a Jodeci-esque R&B instrumental. The journey eventual shifts into a dark and strange place; a rebirth into parallel plane where you have to remind yourself that love still exists.