I haven’t written in awhile because I’ve been so stunned into silence with the recent news of the ongoing assaults on Black lives. Thus, making it very difficult for me to find something worth celebrating as we find ourselves in the wake of President Obama’s marriage equality announcement.
Just when I was beginning to unthaw, frozen from recent news of the murder of Black people in Charleston, left with nothing to feel and noticing that anything I had wanted to say was already said. But then I logged into Facebook on Friday, June 26th and noticed all the rainbows and glitter spewing from my computer screen.
If I even thought to celebrate President Obama’s announcement to legalize same sex marriage in the u.s. per the Supreme Court’s decision, it was the tiniest glimmer of a unicorn’s idea. Quickly stamped out by the rampaging herd of emotions I’m finally able to feel, as we find ourselves on the other side of the Charleston incident and the many vigils being held to honor those who became Ancestors at the hands of white violence.
Feeling my brows knit with worry, my chest loosened for a moment and then tightened along with my set jaw as I reached for a pen and let the words and emotions flow through me. I wrote this because I could no longer bear to sit with it; I needed to get it out and make room for other thoughts and feelings.
Last night I fell asleep thinking about how I might bring myself to care about marriage equality in the u.s. as a Black queer femme person.
Black queers have loved each other as long as there’s been love in the land to share. We’ve been loved. We’ve shared love.
But, and I know I’m not the first to say this, it’s a hell of a lot harder to get married if you’re incarcerated – or dead.
Legalize Black people! ALL Black people!
But until then, invite me to your wedding! Let me sing songs for you, pray for you, light candles, and bless your love. Let me bask in your love and remind myself that this love existed in all its queerdo glory before Prez-O handed down his state sanctioned confirmation.
As a Black queer person, I want to celebrate. However, as a Black queer person I find myself in mourning.
So, here I am: Black and queer. It’s the space between that I occupy – that darkmatter that is the negative space in which Blackness exists – known and unknown. Tiny particles whose very existence is constantly debated.
A delicate balance of living my life on the AND because I cannot be only one or the other. And these identity qualifiers are mostly available for people different from me, who aren’t me, to move across the word-bridge of the unknown, and into the realm of darkmatter.
I read on Facebook today, someone wrote: “We can’t write our way out of oppression. Think-pieces aren’t liberation.”
What I know is that the system has us pinned down on all sides and we’re going to need all hands on deck for freedom to be ours. We need artists, and writers, and mathematicians, and freedom fighters, and educators, and healers, and witches, and priests, and rabbis, and neighbors, and children. We need each other and every person’s talents are valuable.
If we’re going to tear down this world and start anew, we need visionaries and we need people’s imaginations to work in tandem with their dreams and their hands. We have plenty of work to do…
The line has long since been drawn in the sand.
So, I ask you: “whose side are you on, friend? Whose side are you on?”