introduction

for white boys who love my body but think my mind is immoral

You can’t keep running in and out of my life. – The Gap Band

I want to be angry. I want my rage to carry me like it hasn’t before — to break glass, and split stones with my hands. To let loose the little girl who always wanted to be a cannon. Then I remember that I am Black. Then I remember I am sick and I am a woman. Then I remember how I’ve crafted my silence into an identity I cannot accurately name. That I have relied upon my silence as an incomplete sewing kit.

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When white boys tell me that I am beautiful, they really mean they must sever my spine in order to hoist my body in the air for themselves. White boys cannot assess without theft. They’ve learned how to seize the world and not live in it.

Too many white boys have attempted to love me. They think if they can fuck me, I will understand some part of their tenderness. They think if they fuck me, I can become human like them. And I have let it happen. I have witnessed to my own death and written my own eulogy.

Here rests a woman who scared her way into heaven. Will god throw her away too?

When white boys tell me I am beautiful, they are saying I need to be tamed, that I am growing too freely. My freedom used to be called savage but modern parlance doesn’t like to allow such glaring insights into others’ feelings. Now we twist our words not realizing time can undo any bend. And white boys know they can’t safely time travel. Time traveling will reveal who they are, but I cannot be seduced by the present because I am Black and sick and a woman.

The days when I rest from stitching the torn parts of my body are the days when they call me immoral. White boys love to tell me exactly where I have fallen. They always notice when I have stopped working. When I tell them that they are cruel for noticing my movement but not my creation, they clap back and say I am mouthy. If only white boys knew how many words Black women swallow. If only they knew the lifetime’s worth of undetonated bombs that reside in our intestines. If only they knew “being Black and alive and a woman is a metaphysical dilemma” are words we can barely comprehend no less conquer. If only they considered how many times Black women have considered suicide because it’s impossible to live and choke through every moment lived.

I am choking and they have the audacity to say they love my body. Take your hands off my neck, white boy. Learn who you are and, maybe, you can help put air back into my lungs.

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I want to be angry. I want to throw the topple-the-universe tantrum I was always told not to throw because my mama said the white folks would stare. They’d stare and I’d be embarrassing us all. They’d stare and their eyes would beget all of the hatred we knew they sheltered. I want to be mad. I want to ask white boys, How dare you show up at my funeral and use the program as a fan? You haven’t earned that right. I want my body to detonate so that they can feel the fallout of 28 years of sacrifice.

My birthday is the 43rd anniversary of Hiroshima. England held all of my mothers in Its grip. I cannot willingly trust any power but my own.

I want to do it all but then remember I am Black and I am sick and I am a woman and I’ve got so much to sew together.

 

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introduction, purpose

take two

I’m going to come right out and say it: maintaining a blog is difficult.

I cannot easily place my finger on it. There is something both forced and disquieting about a blog. Perhaps it is the knowledge that whatever is being published is so quickly pushed into the vast, ephemeral spaces of the internet and, all of a sudden, part of me is lost to an anonymous audience. Maybe trying to shout in an already crowded space strips away at the ego — really solidifies, to some degree, the unimportance of what I have to say. It could just be that I’m lazy and too easily dizzied by the brightness of my screen and the drone of whatever is playing on iTunes.

The only blogs I’ve ever come close to maintaining were my live journal  (I was an angsty 14 year old girl once) and an indie music blog my friend and I created in an earnest attempt to talk about music as casually as you would with your closest of confidants. To say the least, they are both resting somewhere in internet heaven (or hell, for the pessimists).

I started this particular blog with the shortsighted and desperate attempt to get myself writing again. To get motivated in the right way. To reach people I couldn’t readily grab on the street; to be heard, honestly. One formal post, two moderately creative pieces and this blog too lay in the sweetest repose waiting for an inevitable death. But today (TODAY! I want to emphatically exclaim) is the day to muster the courage to say yes and accept whatever destiny lurks ahead. Today is the day to try. I cannot assure you — dear reader, faceless audience –that my attempt will be anything worthwhile. I can’t guarantee anything other than this: I will attempt to portray the truth as I see it and I will try my hardest to transplant a human heart into an age of social networks and dwindling person-to-person contact.

I’ve got an offer for you internet: I’d love to take you to dance, if you’ll have me.