The climate of today's world would lead you to believe that love should not be a priority. I've felt pressure as a queer black woman to let my activism and advocacy take priority over love, intimacy, and joy. In doing that, I've done myself a huge disservice. I've found that for Black Love to flourish in my life, I need back up. There have been songs, and poems, stories, and quotes that have allowed me to learn to love in brand new ways.
1. Zora Neale Hurston | This quote taught me to allow love to be flexible. When we let love take the shape of it's container, you will see that it shifts in shape and stance as you experience it. It expands and contracts and with each iteration we must be open to the way it manifests in our lives.
2. James Baldwin | For love to be fully present, you have to trust the vulnerability of your truth. You cannot love if you are unwilling to show the portions of yourself you most loathe and unsure of. This transparecy will save you.
Joy is hard when there is so much sorrow and trepidation surrounding our lives. Though we've been in survival mode since we landed here in this country, the current state of affairs has heightened the nonnegotiable need to take better care of ourselves. Attending to our joy should not, and frankly cannot be an elective action. We all know that we are better & braver when our joy takes priority.
Here are 30 ways to make it through...
Titty Grabs (Either your own, or with proper consent.) --You can't really be mad with a boob in your hand.
Twerk Sumthing. "Cash Money taking over for the 99 & 2000"
Take off your bra and/or draws
Talk to almost any black grandparent. If you don't have one borrow one.
Tomorrow, we will wake up in a very different America. At thirty two years old, I want to focus on myself, my needs, my wants, goals and dreams. But all I keep thinking about is the children in my life. How will the next four years shape them? Who will they become under this administration? Children who grew up after the September 11th attacks had a different understanding of America, just as I’m certain that children who witnessed America post Pearl Harbor did. How will this inform them?
Even the most conservative of children still witnessed a Black Man as president, and more importantly a Black Woman as First Lady. I believe I will miss Michelle the most. First Lady Obama was everyone’s cool ass auntie. I highly doubt I’ll be able to truly articulate how impactful she was on my life.
In the fall of 2008 I was twenty-four years old, a junior in college, ready to take the world by storm. I remember walking across my quaint campus to vote. I remember feeling so proud. I stood in the freez...
On this last Martin Luther King Jr. Day of the Obama Administration, I am sitting with the overwhelming need to address white people directly. The white people who have found the word “ally” in their lexicon, the people who are earnestly ready to act, but are unsure how to move forward. To the white folk who are for the first time feeling the singe of despair that most folk who sit at the intersections have been feeling since we first arrived in this country. I’ve created a list of several things you can do today and everyday to really make this county the beloved community we strive for it to be.
You ready? Here we go.
1. Stop asking people of color how to respond to injustices that were not created by or systematically upheld by people of color. Talk. To. White. People.
Believe it or not… we’re not the problem here. And I refuse to use all my precious high school typing class skills explaining why Black-on-Black crime, mythical boot straps, All Lives Matter, and Misogynoir is a thing. D...
Strang7Fruit started with a pair of recycled spoon earrings that i purchased at a street fair in Cleveland. They were mustard yellow, and i wore them all the time. Buying those made me realize that anything could be an earring.
As I was hanging out at a craft store with one of my best friends, he was shopping for painting supplies, and i said “i wish i could make my own earrings” and just like that it began. we walked through the aisles picking out random things that i had never saw anyone make into an earring. I owe S7F to Van Laster. Thank you.
It was important to me to create things that spoke to who I was as a queer woman of color. And sense i walk with a perpetual sense of unforgivable blackness. S7F became the perfect metaphor. Based off Billie Holiday’s song about brutal treatment of American-Africans I deemed it extremely important to honor that brutality not with shying away from those images but hanging them from the ears in the same fashion of lynching. Our history is drench...