Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind

Leave a comment

How I Got Ovah: Future Memoirs by the Spill Webinar Participants

Screen shot 2014-09-02 at 10.04.22 AMLast night the Spill Webinar participants, shared dreams, got embodied, mapped strategic decisions (and others) and stomped three times hard enough to unshackle somebody.  This poem is made up of the titles of memoirs that we will be able to write based on the changes we are making in our lives right now.   Brilliance Remastered. Forthcoming :)

How I Got Ovah

Future Memoirs of the Spill Webinar Participants

(with gratitude to Carolyn Rodgers, Melvin Dixon, Essex Hemphill, Joseph Beamand more!)

How I Turned Excellence Into Excess

How I Said Yes When the Universe Asked Me to Dance

How I Got My Life in the Life

How I Stopped Proving My Genius to White People (co-authored with Phillis Wheatley)

How I Started an Organization to Save My Own Life and Yours

How I Made Family Through Radical Intellectual Conversation

How I Made a House a Queer Home

How I Let the Ancestors Dance Forever

How I Brought Mindfulness to Writing

How I Created Space for Intergenerational Healing

How I Let a Love Blossoming Through Tumblr Change My Life

How I Learned to Sing Like Fannie Lou Hamer

How I Learned to Be the Value of My Time

How I Became Present for the Broadness of My Vision

How I Got Ovah

Leave a comment

Turning Paper Into Food: Alchemy from the Participants in the Brilliance Remastered Spill Webinar

Screen shot 2014-10-22 at 6.39.59 AMLast night Brilliance Remastered‘s Spill Webinar for sustainable strategies to build an intellectual life that exceeds the boundaries of the academic industrial complex continued. We worked with our dreams (as in intentions) and our dreams (as in the layered picture show that happens while we are asleep) as resources informing each other.  We looked at what is at stake ancestrally in the way we structure our intellectual lives.  We claimed our power as alchemists to turn what we have into what we need by bringing our transformative questions to the table.   This is the poem that we created together to describe the changes we are here to see through to reality.

turning paper into food

by the participants in the Spill Webinar


how do we turn fear into love?

how do we turn worry into wishes?

how do we turn attention into attunement?

how do we turn hope into happiness?

how do we turn concern into courage?

how do we turn care into creativity?

how do we turn today into a portal?

how do we turn our bodies into magic?

how do we turn shame into a wholehearted embrace?

how do we turn walls into bridges?

how do we turn thought into action?

how do we turn caterpillars into butterflies?

how do we turn promises into pages?

how do we turn bravery into blessings?

how do we turn fixity into movement?

how do we turn jobs into journeys?

how do we turn one into we?

how do we turn the ocean into words?

how do we turn words into the ocean?

how do we turn markets into communities of accountability?

how do we turn gatekeepers into prophets?

how do we turn training into underground railroad stations?

how do we turn survival into a promise?

how do we turn proof into possibility?

how do we turn righting into writing?

how do we turn teaching into truth telling?

how do we turn interventions into invitations?

how do we turn novelty into knowing?

how do we turn talking into drumcall beating hearts?

how do we turn boxes into breathing?

how do we turn birth into being?

*note: if you be asking yourself these same questions…you must be a Brilliance Remastered kindred spirit.  Put yourself on the email list right here.

Leave a comment

My Best Idea Yet: Quirky Conceptions from the Spill Webinar Participants

Screen shot 2014-10-21 at 6.32.22 AMLast night was the first session of Brilliance Remastered’s newest and most experimental webinar intensive: SPILL.  We experimented with sinking in, visualizing what we are immersed in, releasing, remembering the ground, examining lit candles that have already burned out on altars to our fears and more!   The participants in the Spill webinar are going deep together and designing alternative intellectual projects and they are bringing along what Audre Lorde calls “the non-european consciousness” (some other people call it the subconscious mind) to transform everything.   All of the activities in the Spill Webinar are based on an oracle text of freedom scenes I wrote, drawn from Hortense Spillers’ asides in the crucial literary critical text Black, White and In Color.  Our closing group poem last night draws on the phrase “quirkiness of conception” from her introduction to her enduring book of essays.   What if you were having your best idea yet all day long?

quirkiness of conception

(excerpt from Spill by Alexis Pauline Gumbs)

the first time i thought of you, you were swimming, towards you, through me.  first time i thought i was drowning in a world that needed you in it or it would disappear. first time i knew you existed the rest of the history of the world popped like a bubble unready unworthy and my body wanted only future, only you.   the first time i felt you move we were deep underwater under something built to keep us under and i couldn’t see anything but i understood there was something above everything.  above everything despite everything i would find fresh air and breathe again.  above everything despite everything i would free you.  my best idea yet.

my best idea yet

by the participants in the Spill Webinar

waking up when i wake up, my best idea yet

letting happiness lead, my best idea yet

daring to hope, my best idea yet

curious my best idea yet

seeking spirit guidance, my best idea yet

believing in believing, my best idea yet

experimenting with being present, my best idea yet

loving this being, my best idea yet

appreciating being alive and in this body, my best idea yet

listening to my body, my best idea yet

full belly breathing, my best idea yet

being well, my best idea yet

sitting on the floor, my best idea yet

dancing, my best idea yet

praying before responding to emails about money, my best idea yet

listening to the whispers of ancestors, my best idea yet

choosing, my best idea yet

touching the water, my best idea yet

hugging my loved ones, my best idea yet

nurturing intimacy, my best idea yet

allowing myself to be understood or mysterious my best idea yet

honoring my brilliance and everyone else’s my best idea yet

surrendering to the creative processes, my best idea yet

writing what I want to write, my best idea yet

teaching who I want to teach, my best idea yet

learning, still, my best idea yet

cultivating my ability to stay if i want to, my best idea yet

leaving if I want to, my best idea yet

making time for pleasure, my best idea yet

going to sleep when I am tired, my best idea yet

Leave a comment

Quality of Light Informational Webinar: The Poetics of Entering Graduate School

Photo 80

“The quality of light by which we scrutinize our lives has direct bearing upon the product which we live, and upon the changes which we hope to bring about through those lives.”

― Audre Lorde

7pm Weds Oct 29th

This is an informational webinar with Alexis Pauline Gumbs especially for people who are applying or considering applying to graduate school THIS WINTER.   Our conversation will include the crucial aspects of:

  • remembering your purpose for going to graduate school and your accountability to the communities you love
  • distinguishing YOUR application from the record number of applications graduate schools are receiving this cycle
  • the steps to identifying an intellectual community you WANT to be part of for the next phase of your life

Reserve your spot for free or with a donation here:

Sista Docta Alexis Pauline Gumbs was admitted to several of the best graduate programs in her field with full funding.   She chose to get her PhD in English with certificates in African and African American Studies and Women and Gender Studies from Duke University.  She was able to deepen her relationship to the intellectual traditions that informed her and the communities that created her during her time in graduate school by fostering meaningful and supportive relationships with her faculty mentors, student colleagues and local community.   Today, she balances writing influential  intellectual work on black feminism and Caribbean women’s writing with public scholarship and the ongoing creation of her own intergenerational and intergalactic educational initiatives Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind and The Mobile Homecoming Project.

Leave a comment

The Spill Intensive: Sustainable Strategies for Exceeding the Boundaries of the Academic Industrial Complex (Webinar October 20th-24th 9pm EST)

from Brilliance Remastered

The Spill Intensive: Sustainable Strategies for Exceeding the Boundaries of the Academic Industrial Complex   Webinar October 20th-24th 9pm EST

Rodney Ewing, My Country Needs Me by Hortense Spillers
Rodney Ewing, My Country Needs Me by Hortense Spillers

Coming out of the insights of the recent Shape of My Impact back to school webinar, The Spill Intensive is an experimental space for those visionaries who want to honor the ways their inspiration, spiritual imperatives and accountability to oppressed communities EXCEED the boundaries of the University system.

Using an innovative curriculum based on Sista Docta Alexis Pauline’s decade of work on the brilliant excess of the language practice of black feminist literary critic Hortense Spillers, the Spill Intensive invites 9 webinar participants to

  • inhabit scenes of stolen freedom
  • interrogate internalized capitalist default practices
  • and activate practices that make tangible space in our lives and in the world for the unruly brilliance that our ancestors and our communities demand!

The intensive will meet online every night for 1 hour and 30 minutes at 9pm EST Oct 20th-24th. Fee: $200  Reserve your spot with an email to explaining what you hope to get out of the course and your $50 deposit:

Leave a comment

Favorite Facilitator Moment Day #2: James Baldwin Birthday Party


This was a beautiful event some years back where Mobile Homecoming hosted and facilitated some brilliant black queer men who work in the literary tradition of James Baldwin around the US at a gathering on James Baldwin’s birthday here in Durham. It was an honor to create an event that centered the genius of queer black men as a person that benefits SO much from the brilliance of black men being themselves! Centering that brilliance in a space with participants who were of many genders and racial constructions and backgrounds was a challenge and joy. It affirmed the fact that black queer men are creating a transformative resource that EVERYONE benefits from and was an opportunity to honor those generations of bravery and love.

May we do this together always. And if this resonates with you, think about coming to the Juneteenth Freedom Academy for Facilitators this November:

Or audit or donate to the scholarship fund:

And if you live in Durham come to the Fannie Lou Hamer Birthday Party tonight!

Leave a comment

Favorite Facilitator Moments (Day 1)

291272_952549885232_4955641_o Facilitation as time travel: This is a moment from a birthday party in my living room several summers ago for NC’s own boundary breaking sista-scholar Anna Julia Cooper! We had cake and everything! What made this educational celebration SO special is that it was also part of a send off for the brilliant Naeemah Kelly another local genius who was about to head to DC to start her journey at Howard U.

Facilitators can attend to ancestors in a way that mobilizes current and future generations. It was beautiful to hear the blessings for Naeemah in the room and to remember that our genius lives in our capacity to love and support each other.

I hope you join us at the Juneteenth Freedom Academy for Facilitators on Nov 1 and 2nd in Durham, NC!

For more information visit the event page here:

Register here (scholarship info is in the registration form):

Offer your $75 deposit here (and be sure to include the note Juneteenth Deposit):

Your registration is considered complete once you have completed all required questions on the registration form and offered your deposit.


If you are NOT available for the training you can register as an individual auditor and get the workbook/reader that participants will be using in November and sign up for a 45 minute session with Alexis Pauline Gumbs about taking your facilitation to the next level:

Offer your $75 here (and be sure to include the note Juneteenth Auditor):


If your organization would like to bring Alexis to lead a transformative facilitation workshop customized to the mission and needs of your organization email to schedule a training.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,549 other followers