Wakanda forever. On Saturday, my brother and I headed out to the first showing of Black Panther in the nearest local cinema because why not. We had it foreseen: later that day and during Sunday, families will flood the booth and I, a legitimate hater of long queues, will probably not be in the best mood to watch the film while being sat on the stairs. There were a lot of people lining up for the movie early that morning, my 10:40 hunch was right and I was only able to snag milk shakes before we stepped into the world of T’Challa.

First of all, thank you, MCU, for paying the well-worth respect to the rich, diverse culture of Africa. Thank you for bringing us there with an utterly gorgeous superhero (I’m looking at you, Mr. Boseman) surrounded by a pack of strong ladies and deeply rooted beliefs that should not be broken. In Black Panther, nobody’s perfect, not even the seemingly-righteous King T’Chaka who had blood in his hands and kept it a secret for years. In effect, T’Challa to me was a black version of Captain America: loyal, emphatic, grounded, a seed that flourished while being nourished in rich, luxe soil. He was, in all aspect, a king, but he was also a boy — a son, making him a perfect parallel to Erik Killmonger who, by the way, also had a right to the throne.

The movie was a feast in the heart, basically because I was swooning at every color, at every nod to African legacies sprinkled all over the film. I was gawping at Nakia’s father. I gawped at Nakia, who was Lupita Nyong’o, and at Angela Basset who to me was the royalest of all royals. And then there was Shuri. And then there was Dora. I actually found Ross Everett’s role unnecessary (I mean, WHY IS HE HERE HE IS NOT NEEDED) and damn, when we got to that chase in South Korea, I was almost kicking the chair in front of me. These ladies rock.

Thank you for giving them this big of a space.

I loved Shuri’s smarts and sassiness. I loved Nakia’s womanly bravery. But most of all, I loved Dora’s loyalty to the throne, where she is forced to served even the man she detests, just because she had so much respect for the kingdom she serves. She and Nakia both loved Wakanda in different ways, in ways they knew was good, and I looked at is a real-life issue. We serve, we save. We can be one or the other; we can be united and be enemies.

And the men. Oh, the men. I have so much adoration for the details given to the tribes. The herders. The warriors. M’Baku earned my respect in all ways, especially when he refused to take the one potion that separates him from being king of his land to King of Wakanda. And that scene when he turned around to give T’Challa and his female family some privacy was just so endearing.

So, I’ve said many spoilers, haven’t I? And I didn’t warn you? Well, you had it coming because the title of this blog says it all.

Meanwhile, in the other realm, in the part where I’m supposed to say things about how my week went by, I’d tell you: it was RAD. First of all, I have a poem accepted (the first of many) at Not Very Quiet, and would you look at that? My first crossover to the actual literary world! I have submitted an essay to two literary journals yesterday, a little piece I was proud of, and I am going to push for it until it was out there.

Boy, I have so many stories.

I had a full request, and this ignited a fire in me first time after the longest cold, there months. Wow. There’s a place for me. Someone’s willing to give it a listen. I know it might not be it, but I hope she gets a laugh out of my quirky little cast. Lucas is such a keeper. Can I have him irl? And Fifth. I have so many things to say about Fifth. But it won’t fit in one book, so I’m going to have two. Lord, let me have two. But as for now, one is enough.

Yesterday, I was reading Psalms 90, and it struck a chord in me. A sense of urgency. In verse 10, it says, “Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty, if our strength endures; yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away.” Seventy years. My mom is in her 63rd year. I may have time to wait, but my parents don’t. And the truth of it is I’m willing to grab the first golden deal that comes in sight to I can make this dream come true and they can celebrate this victory with me while they still can.

Of course, I have a lot of victories-to-be-pursued in my head, but this is the closest, realest thing. I already tore down my calendar. I’ve disregarded my self-imposed schedules. I’m leaving these hands empty to make way for God’s will, AND promises, to be done.

Time is short. Live it well. If not for you, then celebrate it for the people around you. x