“I loved him in a secret place. It wasn’t hiding. It was somewhere, some where, some place I couldn’t put my tongue to but I knew it existed. I didn’t know where it was but I knew it was. I knew because it was a soul-truth. Not one of those truths where your tongue just does a few tricks and flips and clicks and some sort of phrase comes out that sounds good enough. Not that. Not that type of love. That type of meaningly notion of love that has no power. Has no blood or sweat behind it. That type of love that wasn’t paid for with nothing but time. Time is cheap. Time is going to be spent anyway. Spent with them* or spent with just you doing something else meaningless in this world of meaningless activity masquerading around as productivity when it is really just capitalism doing what capitalism, running you down and making you feel about your own euthanasia, that’s what it do! I’ll tell you true, now, just listen here. THAT. IS. NOT. THE. WAY. I LOVE(D)?. THEM*.”
23. Weaponizing your new-found social justice lingo; to cover up your fuckshit
24. Shading folks for doing in public; what you do in the dark
25. Acting like all discomfort and disagreements are violence
26. Acting like you in love when you know it’s just lust
The work is a tour de force if not for the sheer breadth of content, then for the refusal of its sweeping verse to comfort when comfort is not on the menu for the subjects at hand. It is more than unflinching—it unsettles, it bites, it scars, it lingers, and it loves, simultaneously in a language perfected by, common and accessible to those who have perfected the art of living while Black, BlaQueer or Queer….”
“Why is it important that this Southern BLACK woman used the South as the canvas for her West African journey through womanhood? Because when we were chained and shipped, it wasn’t just our stolen bodies that traveled to this stolen land, but our gods traveled with us. The Orisha (gods and spirits) of Ifa (the traditional Yoruba religion) and Vodun (the traditional Dahomey religion) have been on this journey with Afro-Americans (Africans of the Americas) for its entirety. Whatever we faced, they faced it too and it was their strength that kept us going no matter where we were delivered; whether it be Puerto Rico (Santeria), Brazil (Condomble), Haiti (Vodou), or right here in your Big Mamma’s Alabama kitchen (*insert any given Black church that probably has a “fix the roof” fund*).
“Who are these gods and wtf do they have to do with Beyonce’s damn-good Lemonade??” you ask. Thanks for being impatient, let me get to the juice”
We look to them for guidance, nurturing, mother-work and rarely allow them to exist in shared spaces as publicly sexual and attractive people. The participants note this interesting axis between race/gender/gender performance where black fat and femme people are often remade into the earlier image of the black mammy, existing only to give and serve. These mammies often had children, but no one dare claim them as the object of their desire. Sex with a mammie was something to be ashamed of. She was there to be used, not loved. All too often we reproduced this sort of racial-sexual consumerism with our friends, our sex partners and our family members.