We are soon to see the doom.
When God is generous,
Man is greedy.
Spend countless time looking in the mirror
Counting the minutes before the image
reflects an unfamiliar yet desired change
When the glass of actuality laughs of your shame.
Feel protected by what is damaging you.
Like thorns from a rose, your hidden insecurities
turn your insides into a bloody scatter
Your intelligence works as though it were sitting
on idle time, watching you speak sleeping words
with not any substance.
Are selfish like mother nature. You go around
advertising your powers, abusing your ability
to take the sun away before one is ready to
embrace the sunset.
I am the night shine.
Preserved through the day time.
Though life can be sour like limes
I am up and at it, running to get
my next dime.
I am the night shine.
My mind is my temple
Feeding my hunger for more experience
with each year’s climb.
Taking in the good and bad,
Never to whine.
This is not a fancy shmancy article so forgive my errors, but I question…how it is possible to celebrate ALL that is Black History in one month out of the year? With so many fascinating stories, people, and movements? and it’s not just the slavery, struggle, or fight. It is the people who lived through the stories and have made Black History the very essence of what we should be proud of. There is nothing more special than spending time getting to know those who have raised their fists in your futures honor. The artists, activists, speakers, and all of the above’s, they should be celebrated. I have decided to take a few hours out of my day and spend time writing on a different Black individual and their strides. I’ve decided to start off with a Black feminist who wrote a strong story and led a very powerful path for writers and revolutionary women alike.
A name that rings with all intellectuals and followers of history, Black and White. She penned the story of “The Color Purple”, giving a passionate real life view and understanding of the struggles in Black slavery, love, relationships, and abuse to the modern-day individuals who may not have been able to study or learn it from their family members. Before she wrote “The Color Purple”, a Pulitzer prize-winning novel, she began penning poetry, writing her first book of poetry while a senior at Sarah Lawrence. Women like Alice are a goldmine for people like me, those who appreciate the birth and life of real life artists, and have been able to write their name in the sky of history for the world to keep forever. I hope that I can pass a message to promote self-awareness and pride in our future. The stories of the people being pointed out in my 29 stories of Black Stride will surely get anyone interested in doing something powerful to get on their feet.
*ALICE WALKER INFORMATION*
AKA Alice Malsenior Walker
Born: FEB 9th, 1944
Birthplace: Eatonton, Georgia
Race or Ethnicity: Black
Sexual orientation: Bi-Sexual
Nationality: United States
Most Notable Work: The Color Purple
Alice is the author of several literary pieces, with a lot of them being poetry and short stories. Although I have not been able to read them all, I have come across one particular poem that stood out to me titled “Our Martyr”:
When the people
have won a victory
do you ever wonder
at that moment
where the martyrs
They who sacrificed
to bring to life
though nonetheless more precious
than their blood.
I like to think of them
hovering over us
wherever we have gathered
to weep and to rejoice;
smiling and laughing,
actually slapping each other’s palms
Their blood has dried
and become rose petals.
What you feel brushing your cheek
is not only your tears
Martyrs never regret
what they have done
having done it.
they never frown.
It is all so mysterious
the way they remain
how they beam
a human sunrise
and are so proud.
The thing that stood out the most was her poetry scrap-book from when she was 15 years old, “Poems of a Childhood Poetess”. It reminded me of myself, because I wrote my first poetry book when I was 9 years old!
Alice has so many accomplishments, which include activism for womens rights, anti-war, countless literary pieces, and SO much more. She is a hero to aspiring writers like myself and I hope that one day I will be able to touch people the way she has done me.
-Keep uplifting Alice! ❤
This is I,
Your yes person serving every satisfaction under the sun,
As I wait with open arms in my kingdom come
When trust should be in itty bitty pieces, This is I
trusting your unforeseeable betrayals
when the proper move would be
to pack my shit and run.
My index finger holds a flame at the tip
Blown out by excitement,
I draw a silhouette of naked promises intertwined leg to leg
and lips to whispers
Hollowed center leaves the unexplainable possibly
and you paint in bright colors and passions
We make love in artistic fashion
This is a scary space…
Will it forever stay in place?
This time I am no longer afraid
because this is I,
and together with imagination
I become we, with or without you.
If you had to write a letter to your previous or present self, what would it say? Do you know? I sure didn’t! And the idea was both creative and comforting. I was told that you really wanted to get an idea of how you feel, you should write a letter addressed to oneself. Here is mine….
Wow, this is weird. Trying to find the correct words and ways to say something to you without sounding too dark or too negative. I recognize you for who you really are.You hate to be exposed, unclosed because you know the territory with having your heart ajar. People are tricky ones, their faces and eyes can be either deceitful or reprehensibly judged just because you can never tell. I know what happened to you during childhood, the few memories that you do have. The ones that make you feel some type of way, even until this day. I know about the people who have taken your innocence away and the teachers who didn’t believe in you. The kids who called you “crusty” , the ones who have made fun of your African descent, the boys who didn’t want you, and the family members who believed you weren’t good enough for them. I know all about that, I know how it aches you until this day. You don’t really hide it well. You have a crumbling wall, you are strong but for how long? Being at your age, hating love and loving to hate doesn’t make for a “normal” bout of intimacy, which all together is a puzzle. Your twisted heart causes pain to those who give themselves to you, and you interpret this as power of psyche and trust from the other party, only to leave them with a broken spirit. Temporarily of course. It is because you have a lot of things that you need to let go. You are a shield, protecting yourself and others. You are passionate but indifferent, A confusing oxy-moron in the form of a woman with a contorted confidence. What I would like to know, is how do you expect to move forward if your present is so distorted? Living in motels for the a few years has created an almost destructive form of strength, the kind that has boxed up with the rest of your emotions, that is why your head is throbbing at this very moment. Being unstable is a very scary thing for you, because you know you are alone. Come clean to yourself. You are also very confused about your spirituality, it doesn’t take a lot to break it, It is very weak. At your age, you are starting to feel the urgency of change. Being sunken underneath repeated layers of mud you will guaranteed to come out very dirty, But the good thing about coming out of the mud is you will then have an opportunity to clean yourself, clean your soul.
If only we could bathe ourselves in the worlds beauty.
Bite into a fruit to clean our souls.
And our eyes could only see what made our insides smile.
My hands bleed from digging up my remaining pride
you carry me away with confident stride
keeping me at bay, You are an everlasting everything.
I am chaotic peace shaped in the body of a woman who yearns
My heart is the moon, a red moon that burns.
Sprinkled acceptance from you causes me to bow at your feet
I am your servant in true form, your every need I will meet.
I am captured at any distance, is this love? Or simply me accepting defeat?
Love explains nothing
But to be worshiped like religion.
Betrayed by my body
My mind rebels only to be overturned
The meaning is broad, like poetry
Love whispers, “you don’t have to understand me…
But I will touch you, delicate like a feather
heavy like a brick…your heart will succumb…”
I am screaming, “Yes I am!”
to each listening ear near and far, but they know that I am simply not nearly,
not even close.
I am a book written in mixed spanish and arabic
understood only if you had the time to go through
the maze leading to whats never understood
and even when I whisper you clues to the answer, I’d be
speaking in a language I wouldn’t even comprehend.
Grass growing below my feet, I stand there motionless
or was I about to jump from a moving plane?
I don’t remember.
But what I do know is
I know nothing of where I am.
so I could go anywhere
I would go anywhere.
I knew he had them hot and rugged finger tips-
from the time he playfully brushed them through my hair.
but this time they felt different
When he touched me down there…”
She was sitting with me at a bar, the place was empty, probably about 6 people in there including us and the bartender. My friend was a beautiful Black woman, her hair natural, pulled back into a bun in the back of her head. Her face almost always owned a scowl, she was usually angry. But today she looked like she was 10 years old. Her features mirrored innocence, not the kind of that you see from kids running around laughing on playgrounds, but more like a child who looked down to hide the fact that she had been hurt by someone she had loved. I nudged her and asked her was she okay, she finally looked up and glanced straight ahead, refusing to look into the eyes of her best friend. “Yeah, I’m okay. But can I ask you a question?” “Sure”, I said. “Okay, I know this is probably a weird time to bring something like this up, but I need to talk about it. Have you ever been molested or anything before?” The question halted me in place. Was this simply inquisition, or was it a confession? Seeing the hurt on her face that it could definitely be the latter, I placed my hand against her back and answered “No..have you?” That was all it took for the tears to come streaming down her face. Here she was, 26 years old and strong as a rock but crying like her breaking point came the minute she had been violated. The realization was hard for me to swallow. I didn’t want to press her for too many details, as I wanted her comfort of vulnerability to come naturally and it did. She told me that her uncle had taken her places that no child should ever have to go. At the age of 8, she found herself sitting in his vehicle, her eyes covered with a brown bandanna, and her mouth placed upon areas of a male body that should be forbidden for children. The details were enough to make me- a woman who is usually more logical than emotional, to shed a tear. I thought about how many Black women face the same issue, the same daunting memory.
The world is filled with epidemics. Some directly affect us, while others may not hit close to home but can allow you to stare a victim right into their eyes. I came across a study last week focusing on the number of Black women who were sexually violated or assaulted before the age of 18. The number was sickening, with it reaching well over 60%. The ages range from young to old, with memories that are both fresh and distant. The problem can be blamed on a number of things, from a lack of both parents influencing protection on the children, from what society teaches our children about the act of sex and what is acceptable and not acceptable. My dear friend, she is one of many women who have faced this terrible situation, and I want to do what I can in order to bring awareness to this abuse.
- Sexual abuse is actually reported more in low income areas where a high number of blacks live. This is because low income areas tend to be more in contact (for a variety of reasons) with public agencies like the U.S. Department of Welfare and the Department of Health and Human Services, etc, where they are more closely observed.
- Those who tend to report abuse are teachers and doctors because they are more likely to expect abuse in lower income families.
- Most African-Americans report abuse by their uncles as opposed to their fathers.
- 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men report they were sexually abused as children. Of that statistic, 3.3 million African-American women have been sexually abused and 1.9 million African-American men have been sexually abused.
- Family members and acquaintances account for 93% of predators.
- 66% of pregnant teens report a history of abuse.
- 66% of all prostitutes were abused as children by a father or father figure.
- Incestuous abuse of blacks was more than three times more likely to be “very severe” (involving oral, anal or vaginal intercourse) compared with that of Whites…and involve force or physical violence and verbal threats.
- Men who have been abused are more commonly seen in the criminal justice system than in clinical mental health settings.
Some men even feel societal pressure to be proud of early sexual activity (no matter how unwanted it may have been at the time).
It is hard to determine who to trust these days, as most of these predators are our own neighbors, family members, or friends. But..we can keep our children in the best environment possible, and teach them to come to you WHENEVER they have any inclination of discomfort while dealing with someone. Most of the women (and some men) who are molested/raped are silenced simply by the fact that they feel uncomfortable sharing what has happened to them.
Lets reverse these statistics, and soften our women. We are beautiful creators of life and we should be honored, not violated.
Sometimes, we forget to think universally. To humanize others enough to feel compassion and empathize with what a stranger is going through. My goal is to get every human to embrace every other human being with blossoming acceptance.
Humanitarian Quest 2012