Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind

C(h)ant. Breathe.: Coming Back to Breath in Honor of Eric Garner and Many More

Leave a comment

10678755_10155141139400314_3141196287744117648_n

photo by Adrienne Maree Brown

Yesterday I had the honor of bringing Black Feminist Breathing to the BOLD National Gathering which took place on a reclaimed plantation here in North Carolina.  Sister-Comrade Genius Facilitator Adrienne Maree Brown describes BOLD as the current Black Power Movement and beautifully contextualizes yesterday’s miracles here: http://adriennemareebrown.net/blog/2014/12/06/black-love-as-a-radical-commitment/

In preparation for the paradoxical and necessary task of bringing Black Feminist Breathing into a moment where as Black folks we are collectively remembering and struggling with Eric Garner’s last words “I can’t breathe,” I offered myself and the participants this meditation.  Maybe it can be a healing part of your journey back to breath.

C(h)ant.   Breathe.

Dedicated to Eric Garner

And to Margaret Garner’s Daughter

*take a deep breath everywhere you see a star

i.

*

return to the place

where you learned

how to breathe

*

where night washed itself

into your dreams

*

return

to the place

where you learned

*

breathing was bigger

than you

or your fears of

dogs bats and sea creatures

*

and would continue

all night long

without you trying

to keep it going

*

human freedom is like that

unstoppable

as the ocean at night

sometimes the crashing is just louder

like right now

*

ii.

*

we are feeling it in our chests

right now

the underwater knowing

of upside down justice

that has to right itself

that hasn’t righted itself

*

the sinking feeling

that the chokehold of the state

is more persistent than the ocean

*

it is not

*

iii.

*

if I could

I would bring all our people

right next to the ocean

to just sit

and breathe with the ancestors

*

just listen

knowing all this sand

was bone

and the stars

are just us

reflected

across the black history

of the universe

*

iv.

*

i want every last breath

to be a tide going out

so we can imagine

some baby somewhere

gasping into time

with an unbroken custody

of air

*

i don’t want the choking struggle

the staccato of bullets

shattering the song

of what we know

*

but sometimes

even as the ocean

slaps the sand

it sounds shocked to me

shoreline shaping impact

this is happening

again

*

v.

*

I imagine

Eric Garner

becoming the ocean

like Margaret Garner’s baby

awakening stream

how all blood flows back

to the salt in this water

how something

unstoppable

screams

*

*

*

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s