Tag Archives: travel

Visible Man: On Double Consciousness and Bike Riding in Berlin

From my latest for Ebony:

It’s my last week in Berlin. I pedal down Martin Luther Strasse. In 1530, the street’s namesake wrote “They are trying to make me into a fixed star. I am an irregular planet.” In Ancient Greek, the word “planet” means “to wander.”

Sometimes I catch people staring as I bike past them. Wide-eyed, mouths slightly open as if to question the color of my hair. Red like Mars, like the rings of Jupiter… In the split-second of my passing, I wander into and through their idea of what a black man is supposed to look like.

Go here to read the rest.


Running Past What I Thought Was the End of My Self

by Lee Jung

When the only light is fire / I run past what I thought was the end / of myself.

There will never be a moment in my life (or yours) in which the following sentence isn’t both relevant and obvious: Everything is about to happen.

I’m about to travel the world for a year.

On June 1, 2012, I will have given most of my belongings to close friends for safe keeping and moved out of my apartment here in Harlem. The following day I will have brunch with those close friends in the East Village. That night I will perform at the Nuyorican with some old and new poet friends. What a perfect way to say “see you later” to the city that has taught and given and groped and loved me so fiercely.

On June 3, I will head to Memphis, the city where I was born, the city where my mother died and is now buried. A few days later, I will go to New Orleans to do research on a writing project. Then on to San Francisco for a week or so of memory making. In mid-June, I’ll make my way to Columbus, Ohio to perform at Columbus State Community College’s Pride event. Then I will head to Cave Canem’s poetry retreat in Pennsylvania. It will be my last destination in the United States for a year.

I will then fly to Berlin and begin my year abroad. My goal is to visit four continents while I continue to write poems and work on my demonic little memoir. Also, I will be writing for Ebony.com about my experiences while traveling. And — and! — I will maintain a wonderful international poetry memoir travel writing hybrid Tumblr.

Some of the places I hope to visit include Munich, Paris, Nice, Cannes, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon, Johannesburg, Cape Town, Bali, Buenos Aires, Montevideo.

I’m excited. I’m freaking out. I’m thrilled. I’m overwhelmed.

But hey — now you know.