Eternal Summer of the Black Feminist Mind


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East Berlin: An Oracle from Audre Lorde

5ab655e9615f266f4579275b9f630879You are wondering whether or not you will have to punch a Nazi.  You are wondering how these Nazi’s got so much political power in the United States.   As always, turn to the Lorde.  Audre Lorde responded to Nazi violence in the streets and in the legislature in Germany at the end of her life with protest and passion.  This is an alphabetized oracle (proper nouns mostly excluded) from her poem “East Berlin.”

For a longer article that contextualizes this within my research on Audre Lorde see my piece over at Bitch Media: https://bitchmedia.org/article/andre-lordes-abcs-fighting-facism

To activate the oracle think of your question for this political moment.  Choose a letter of the alphabet that you associate with that question and scroll down to the relevant letter.  Meditate on the words, create your own poem prompted by them, do what feels right to you.  If your letter has no words in this poem, make your own poem comprised of words starting only with that letter.

 

A

 

 

along

accents

already

at

and

approaching

 

B

 

 

be

Black

blood

by

 

C

 

cement

campcots

candles

chasm

 

 

D

 

dangerous

death

disillusion

dreams

differing

defeat

 

E

 

 

F

 

feels

for

first

from

 

G

 

got

 

H

 

hustle

hatreds

half-cooked

hand-held

hitting

hour

hitting

hollowness

 

I

 

it

in

intersecting

in

in

in

is

in

 

J

 

K

 

L

 

light

laurels

lie

 

M

 

many

my

misplaced

miles

 

N

 

now

never

neon

new

November

 

O

 

on

other

of

only

 

P

 

pays

price

 

Q

 

R

 

reported

rung

rank

 

S

 

sad

suicides

siege

shrieks

streets

stomped

skinheads

scant

still

 

T

 

to

that

tattered

through

tallies

to

two-year-old

their

their

triumph

tasks

 

U

 

upon

 

V

 

visions

volcanic

vision

 

W

 

woman

who

wink

Wall

wall

where

wed

 

X

 

Y

 

Z

 

 

zoo

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Just B: A Blessing Oracle Towards Profound Presence

soraya-jean-louis-mcelroy-memory-seas-blue-bellow-650px

“Memory Seas” by Soraya Jean-Louis McElory

This is a blessing oracle generated out of this week’s Just B: Creative Presence as Praxis Workshop  at Western Washington University inspired by the short story “BlueBellow” by Alexis Pauline Gumbs and the image “Memory Seas” by Soraya Jean-Louis McElory.  You can read or listen to the story and study the image here: strangehorizons.com/fiction/bluebellow/

To use this oracle think about whatever is keeping you from being profoundly present in the current moment, in the movement, in your relationships, in your creative practice.  What is your challenge to being fully present right now?
Think about that question and then click on “find your blessing” in the description:  https://justboracle.tumblr.com/
Alexis Pauline Gumbs

 

 

 

 


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The Erotics of Activism

16649540_10102974922019222_503531793795443873_nToday by an epic double-snowstorm change of plans, I was blessed to be at a workshop by Alexis De Veaux, called “The Erotics of Activism,” at the Whatcom Peace and Justice Center in Bellingham, Washington.   As always, Alexis De Veaux is a gift from the divine.  This workshop healed my relationship to the word activism which I had all but rejected.   Prompted by Alexis’s perfect questions, this is what I wrote today:

I am a diligent lover of my own hands, their shape and possibility.  I am learning to honr my hands by leaving them open for great parts of the day.  I am the hands my ancestors use to continue their work in this world. I am holding onto many things too tightly and it harms the health of my hands.  I am more and less than these hands, unless these hands are also stars and fins.  I love these hands by holding, touching and letting go.  I learned long ago that sometimes I have to sit on my hands and count my breaths in order to silence the overwhelm, in order to hear my sacred instructions for what to do with these hands.

My definition of the erotic is that feeling where purpose fills me up and I am at the first moment of creation and every moment of creation after that and it is all one moment and I am creation, breathing, through these hands.

I define activism as do what spirit say do in honor of my love for the people.  I define activism as move the heavens.  Use your hands.