by Annessa DeLaCruz - Nameless
When I told you
that the sky looks pretty behind you,
I think you misunderstood me.
I think you thought I meant that the sky
is always the sky,
and it only gave you an extra glow for the moment,
as if you alone don't radiate enough.
I really meant that you make the sky show up for you
in colors so vivid, they make me feel
like I've never opened my eyes before
That the sun opens up all of its hues
at once, at first knowledge of your awakening
I meant that rain drops falling from
plush clouds mimic the gloss in your eyes
and that the moment you leave outside for inside,
all the magic subsides.
I meant that the world beckons for you
while you only thought,
I meant you were the color grey
among a beautiful backdrop.
I really was trying to tell you
that the sky puts on its best for you,
like every day is Sunday morning
only for you to bless it with your rainbow
You are more, more than you will ever know.
"Everything I’ve written has been triggered by overwhelming emotional reactions to sadness, chaos, trouble. I find that I never get the urge to write unless I am feeling heavy. I guess as the cliche stands, the best art comes from pain. Being in a better, more healed space currently is challenging for my work, I find that the words don’t spill as easily but I am challenging myself to write more diligently about things that feel good. While it is important to acknowledge pain through art form, it is equally important to recognize joy, prosperity, light in the same spectrum. Duality in all things is key." - Annessa DeLaCruz
Annessa DeLaCruz: "I would say I’ve been a lover and a writer since my first recollection of consciousness. I wrote my first poem when I was seven years old. It was about heartbreak. I was writing about things that I did not fully understand, but I knew existed. There were long gaps from that first poem until now where I did not write at all. I began to write more consistently my freshman year of college (2011) and now here I am. Finally committing to what I always knew I was and what I had a feeling I would become. A lover. A writer. This is me, inviting the world to get to know my essence through emotion and words."
on intention: "For self, the intention is to finally own what I am and not hide or be afraid anymore. When people asked me what I do or who I am I would often reply “I do x,y,z but I also write sometimes” now I bluntly reply “I am a writer.” Taking ownership is my intention for myself. As for everyone I plan to reach, I hope to inspire people to be open about their varying emotions, to always walk in truth and to understand that no matter how underrepresented you are, your work is valid. It is always up to the person to claim their stake in the culture. If you only have 10 fans or followers but you say you’re a singer and you live and breathe it that’s what you are. If you’ve only sold one panting for 10 dollars but you wake up and go to sleep with acrylic-stained denim, then you’re a painter, that’s what you are. You don’t need a following to be an artist; some of the most watched people compromised their best work for clout. If you do good work and good things the right few will look for you in the virtual and in life."
on marginalized voices: I have had so many phases as a creative and I still feel like my evolution has only just begun. I’ve been writing secretly for a really long time partially out of fear that my work won’t be received in the way I intend and partially for fear that my work will be stolen by someone with more “clout." I went through a period where I let go of all of that and started being way more open. Posting more of myself on social media, participating in spoken word events instead of just watching… I would call it my “fuck it” phase. People’s perception of me did not matter much anymore. Today I am somewhere in between still not caring as much but being careful that I share what is the best representation of what I am trying to achieve. All of these phases were indeed fueled by feeling like a part of the marginalized. I would often see writers with not as much skill or metaphorical presence and would think “my poem is beautiful, why don’t people read more?” I would often add simple lines that did not really fit my writing style for clarity in an attempt to make the masses understand what I was trying to get across. My editor friends would always ask me to remove those lines and for good reason; work with deeper meaning is not always meant to be understood by all, in that regard the marginalized are more valuable. Some of the greatest poets and painters died poor, their work was not recognized until long after their time. I think that our job as a marginalized group is to bridge that gap between keeping the integrity and exclusivity of our work while being rightfully credited and compensated for it.
on commodification: So many times I’ve seen talented creatives stripped of their work, taken advantage of and so on. I had an incident where I interned at a radio station and they implemented my ideas (which were formally presented) without compensating me and fired me on a technicality. It was unfair but that is when I knew that I had no interest in working for larger corporations or individuals who solely use their popularity as a catalyst. It became very clear that where I thought I was going was not where I was meant to be. I see more and more marginalized individuals are being more assertive, being their own bosses and speaking up about the things that are wrong within the art community. It brings me happiness, relief and fuels me to do my part.