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Poet Spotlight – PJ Turner

By Gwen D’Vyne Lanier

 

PJ Turner is a poet, a mentor, a partner, and an inspiration. His passion for poetry began while attending high school in Mobile, Alabama and continued while he attended the University of West Alabama.

 

He first aspired to become a rap artist, but after exploring that option (and the high costs of production and other potential roadblocks), PJ changed direction and decided to express himself as a spoken word artist.

 

PJ is the president of the Pensacola/Mobile chapter of Black on Black Rhyme. The program offers writing workshops to young poets. Mentees are encouraged to participate in community outreach programs at churches and prisons, as well as private sector businesses and events. Mentors also organize college visits for young people in the program. The goal is to keep talented youth engaged in using their talents in a positive way.

 

Poets often identify with subject matter. Some focus on social issues, spiritual exploration, or matters of the heart. PJ says his poetry is relationship inspired. He explores personal relationships and how people relate to each other.

 

PJ met Alexis while performing at Lux Sosis (The Event Room in Fort Walton Beach), where Alexis works as a hair designer. It was love that enticed him away from Mobile and to his current home in Fort Walton Beach. They now share their love and lives with the newest member of their family, three-month-old Joriyuh.

 

You can experience PJ at Lucky’s Rotten Apple in Destin Nov. 13. Black on Black Rhyme will host a Step 2 Da Mic event on Nov. 10 at Architexture Salon in Mobile.

 

For more information about PJ Turner or Black on Black Rhyme, email pertur317@gmail.com. You can also find him on Facebook (truholidayseason and blackonblackrhymemobile) and Instagram (@entirely2tru and @step2damic_poets).

 

POETRY BY PJ TURNER

My lady often tells me I am a perfectionist

meanwhile boasting a calm complexity perplexing her as to what my ultimate desires are

and sometimes

that truth hurts like a hammer

hitting the nail on the head

like it had to penetrate my skin to pierce my pride and I

often can argue when she tells me about myself

and she has done it so many times you’d think I wouldn’t be so hard on me

when she bears witness to the shortcomings I have been trying to fix before she was able to see

who i am

was miserable trying to live up to the man that I am going to be

but this perfectionist has since become wise enough to see the only thing that could ever be perfect is time

how it ushers in destiny

puts fate on display

takes you where you need to go even though you been trying to stay

lost

lethargic

she probably can’t see

that I reap the misfortunes of inheritance of generational curses then cursed with the inability to see

my faith as it was recreated in her womb

the baby center says that at four weeks

she is nurturing an embryo the size of a mustard seed

and proof that my faith is never too small to be tested

the day i stared down the barrel of a pregnancy

positive that plus sign perpetuates the purpose of cross hairs

picking off the unworthy

one fearful father at a time

arms so weak it was almost too heavy for me to hold

as it bared the weight of one too many lines and increased hormones

and in that instant

a collision of my past insecurities and my future’s what ifs

exploded and overshadowed the existence of this life we have created and blessing

that a lot of people pray for

and as we pray for

those who boost the statistic of teenage pregnancy i realize

there are 20-plus-year-old babies having babies every day and I was about to become one of them

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