Teena Marie is not just a talented singer/songwriter/producer/musician. She is also a gifted creative writer. Over the years, she has expressed this side of her with her fans by sharing her poetry on several of her albums. Here are a few:
(All poetry on this page is © Teena Marie)

A bleak plague -- a terminal life. Giving birth to the end result -- rebirth -- one million and
one selfish hearts -- and but one altruist too many. I have considered suicide when the
rainbow was enuf. I must survive to tell the story. I have been colored in and faded out. My
hand she quivers, and yet my pen still writes. "If life is death and peace is wrath -- or if you
feel I've chosen to embark on a most precocious path, let me be the judge of my own
cessation, for I am the only one who knows just how far or fast I go. Verily I cannot say if
what is now shall be eternal or if the happiness we may have found this present day shall also
be nocturnal." So much beauty to be see -- chillren, fly away. Open thine not so blind eyes
to the salt and pepper of the earth. You are worth your weight in gold. Gold like the sun --
your body hot, an incandescent strength. Siege forth sweet sage. Can it be this war we rage
has all been fought before. I tiptoed through the forest smelling jasmine in the air -- mine
eyes had seen the glory, when the glory was not there. I raise my hand to the heavens when
words are a loss. The Pilates and the Herods cannot satisfy the cross . . . the master of this
Christian destiny will suffice my wearied mind. The father and the siblings, the body, blood,
bread, and wine, my cup runneth over and truly I am free, I am caught up in a holocaust, a
holocaust of you and me. I am a symbol of you -- a symbol of what will survive for every
chapel pristine, begets a Mary Christine but each barrio, each ghetto is also my family tree. I
am what I am -- simply Tee.

From Irons in the Fire; January 15, 1980

I come full circle mother
Ever wild and ever peaceful
City upon city piled high upon my back
Ten thousand years before Christ
I tilled this earth
and from me sprang poetry, astrology,
music, sensuality,
symmetry, and industrialization.
Mine was the first important work of
society. Since Day One I ruled Supreme.
I reigned my lands nobly and justly.
Loving my sons and
my daughters equally well.
I possess outer beauty coupled with
inner strength.
I have always been woman
and I have always been a backbone.
I have been called many names
by many peoples.
Athene, Dianna, Minerva, Hecate,
Hera, Rhamnusia
Quan Yin, Amaterasu. "But the
Egyptians which are
excellent in all kinds of ancient
knowledge do call me
by my true name, Queen Isis."
"From out of Africa I came." I gave my
angels charge over thee to keep
thee safe in the fruit of my womb,
I am Mary the mother of grace
and my smile will Light your
Primordial Dawn.
I am queen of the Nile.
The Lion and every living beast submit
to me, for I am the last word Momma,
and the true first wonder of the
I am a direct descendant
of the royal house of David, and the
tribe of Judah.
My blood is blue and my lineage
is long.
They can destroy my records, but
I keep coming back.
For I am a symbol of what will

For My Mother and Yours. Lady Tee

From Ivory, 1990

Life is pristinus and deep
A bordello and a shallow ovation
A phantasm, set somewhere between rhythm and rhyme
Tubular bells and the bottom line is
Reality is a clap of hands or a pat on the back, so few and
far between.
I am a saxophone solo, seductive and pure, resonant
and silent, nebulous and clear, tabooed and
promiscuous, "wild and peaceful."
I am upper suburbia and I am Venice Harlem.
I am one million and one contradictions to my
complacent life.
Lady Tee--imperfect happy me, loved and hated and I
can't please everyone
Aah but I try.
I am the answer to a question asked -- where have
you been?
To and from Bali Hai and New Orleans --
all in the same overture.
Romantically I am the warrior and
the pacifist, the woman and the
child, a calm and angry soul
And I can hang tough, even when
things are moving fast.
And you, you are a pure and
simple breed, out of the
mouths of babes
Your simplicity will quench the
dryest soul.
Sweet chariot of humanity, you will never die.
Sweet children of Yahweh, you have made my
burlapped world blue velvet.
You and I are no more or less than each other --
small fragments of the master's imagination,
all so important
For it takes a million fragments to build
one dream come true.
Eli -- you have placed me here in Sodom,
I have visited Gomorrah.
I have seen the blood of the prophets
on unclean hands.
Grant that I may save at least one
soul, even if not mine.
Alas! Alas! The great city, her
destruction has come about.
I have felt the pains of striving to be
free, no irons or screws to crush my thumbs
-- 'tis the ignorant thoughts of man that have
bonded me.
I have been persecuted and labeled just like you
Aah but you label Campbell's soup cans . . .
not people!"

Alhumdulellah, Teena Marie

From Lady T, 1980.

The Verbs
The Nouns
The Double Entrendres
The Nakedness that we
use as an action word
Can we categorize a
mixed emotion
And is it possible that
Can not lay forever in
the cut
Where old wounds bleed
and scars never heal
With a child's heart, I
have lived
For the sensual sexuality
of Marvin
And the purity of
I drown in still waters
when Donny sings
to me
I know heaven rocks
How can I ex-per-ess
to you
What music has meant
to me
How Rachmaninoff
makes me think of you
Always in time and how
the Primordial soup
Thickens when I say
That my world spins on
your axis...
Just because I make my
living in the Land of
Does not lessen the
pain of the words I
just said
There are equal parts
of joy and pain
In every note I sing
In every inflection of
every word
The scale balances out
If not in my life then
perhaps in yours
"A million and one selfish
hearts and but one
Altruist too many"
If I loved you
In all of my lives madly
and incurably
As you might have
If I gave you my essence
keeping nothing for
If I loved you so much
that I would even
forgive you
When you wouldn't
allow me
To keep a sand of my
own time
Or a capsule-as you
might have expected
Would that be enough-
enough love
In all "seriousity," I am
Surrealistically speaking
as the pillow talks
Loud and clear
There is something in
here for you
For I have seen you,
naked to
ah-The World

From Naked to the World, 1988.

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