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Esoterica

pushinghoopswithsticks
velocicrafter:

pushinghoopswithsticks:


“I’m tired of people asking me to smooth my name out for them. They want me to bury it in English so they can understand. I will not accommodate the word for mouth. I will not break my name so your lazy English can sleep its tongue on top. Fix your lips around them. No you can’t give me a stupid nickname so that you can replace this gift of five letters.” - Hiwot Adilow (linked above, performing the quoted piece)
“Give your daughters difficult names. Give your daughters names that command the full use of tongue. My name makes you want to tell me the truth. My name doesn’t allow me to trust anyone that cannot pronounce it right.” - Warsan Shire
pictured above: Entitled white woman Jenny Johnson in all her ethnocentricity. I grew up with women like her, they were my teachers, classmates. They resent any self-possessed “other” as “arrogant” for attempting to access the same common courtesy and respect they might allow those as vanilla as themselves. These women view it as their birthright to decide what is “weird” and “obscure” from within a niche limited to “white women named Jenny.” They blame their linguistic inadequacy on our parentage while resting on the privileges of their own. These women never amount to anything beyond an ignorant bully forever isolating themselves from incredible people with spectacular names.

our insistence that you pronounce our names correctly = “arrogance”
your insistence that our names are too difficult for you & that we should just deal w/the way you mangle them = ????? (the answer is white supremacy)

velocicrafter:

pushinghoopswithsticks:

“I’m tired of people asking me to smooth my name out for them. They want me to bury it in English so they can understand. I will not accommodate the word for mouth. I will not break my name so your lazy English can sleep its tongue on top. Fix your lips around them. No you can’t give me a stupid nickname so that you can replace this gift of five letters.” - Hiwot Adilow (linked above, performing the quoted piece)

“Give your daughters difficult names. Give your daughters names that command the full use of tongue. My name makes you want to tell me the truth. My name doesn’t allow me to trust anyone that cannot pronounce it right.” - Warsan Shire


pictured above: Entitled white woman Jenny Johnson in all her ethnocentricity. I grew up with women like her, they were my teachers, classmates. They resent any self-possessed “other” as “arrogant” for attempting to access the same common courtesy and respect they might allow those as vanilla as themselves. These women view it as their birthright to decide what is “weird” and “obscure” from within a niche limited to “white women named Jenny.” They blame their linguistic inadequacy on our parentage while resting on the privileges of their own. These women never amount to anything beyond an ignorant bully forever isolating themselves from incredible people with spectacular names.

our insistence that you pronounce our names correctly = “arrogance”

your insistence that our names are too difficult for you & that we should just deal w/the way you mangle them = ????? (the answer is white supremacy)

(via snarkbender)

sinidentidades
sinspookycosas:

On the Amtrak from Boston to New York City
The white woman across the aisle from me says, ‘Look, look at all the history, that houseon the hill there is over two hundred years old, ‘as she points out the window past meinto what she has been taught. I have learnedlittle more about American history during my few daysback East than what I expected and far lessof what we should all know of the tribal storieswhose architecture is 15,000 years olderthan the corners of the house that sitsmuseumed on the hill. ‘Walden Pond, ‘the woman on the train asks, ‘Did you see Walden Pond? ‘and I don’t have a cruel enough heart to breakher own by telling her there are five Walden Pondson my little reservation out Westand at least a hundred more surrounding Spokane, the city I pretended to call my home. ‘Listen, ‘I could have told her. ‘I don’t give a shitabout Walden. I know the Indians were living storiesaround that pond before Walden’s grandparents were bornand before his grandparents’ grandparents were born.I’m tired of hearing about Don-fucking-Henley saving it, too, because that’s redundant. If Don Henley’s brothers and sistersand mothers and father hadn’t come here in the first placethen nothing would need to be saved.’But I didn’t say a word to the woman about WaldenPond because she smiled so much and seemed delightedthat I thought to bring her an orange juiceback from the food car. I respect eldersof every color. All I really did was eatmy tasteless sandwich, drink my Diet Pepsiand nod my head whenever the woman pointed outanother little piece of her country’s historywhile I, as all Indians have donesince this war began, made plansfor what I would do and say the next timesomebody from the enemy thought I was one of their own. 
                                  — Sherman Alexie

sinspookycosas:

On the Amtrak from Boston to New York City

The white woman across the aisle from me says,
‘Look, look at all the history, that house
on the hill there is over two hundred years old, ‘
as she points out the window past me

into what she has been taught. I have learned
little more about American history during my few days
back East than what I expected and far less
of what we should all know of the tribal stories

whose architecture is 15,000 years older
than the corners of the house that sits
museumed on the hill. ‘Walden Pond, ‘
the woman on the train asks, ‘Did you see Walden Pond? ‘

and I don’t have a cruel enough heart to break
her own by telling her there are five Walden Ponds
on my little reservation out West
and at least a hundred more surrounding Spokane, 

the city I pretended to call my home. ‘Listen, ‘
I could have told her. ‘I don’t give a shit
about Walden. I know the Indians were living stories
around that pond before Walden’s grandparents were born

and before his grandparents’ grandparents were born.
I’m tired of hearing about Don-fucking-Henley saving it, too, 
because that’s redundant. If Don Henley’s brothers and sisters
and mothers and father hadn’t come here in the first place

then nothing would need to be saved.’
But I didn’t say a word to the woman about Walden
Pond because she smiled so much and seemed delighted
that I thought to bring her an orange juice

back from the food car. I respect elders
of every color. All I really did was eat
my tasteless sandwich, drink my Diet Pepsi
and nod my head whenever the woman pointed out

another little piece of her country’s history
while I, as all Indians have done
since this war began, made plans
for what I would do and say the next time

somebody from the enemy thought I was one of their own. 

                                  — Sherman Alexie

(via deliciouskaek)

spuffyduds.livejournal.com

"Persephone Lied"

fursasaida:

ladyw1nter:

The truth is, I was bored. 
My mother blissing ahead of me, rosebuds rising in her footsteps,
And I skulking behind, thinking,
Oh look. She walks in beauty.
Again.

Her power could boil rivers, if she chose.
She doesn’t choose. She scatters
Heliotrope behind her.

And me, I’ve no powers. I think she’d like
A decorative daughter. A link to the humans
She feeds with her scattered wheat.
A daughter wed to a swineherd’s just the thing
To show that Demeter’s a down-to-earth
Kind of goddess.

Do you know what swineherds talk about?
Swine.
Diseases of, ways to cook;
“That ‘un’s got no milk for ‘er shoats;
Him, there, he’s got boggy trotters.”

And when he leaned in, smiling,
While we sat in a bower sagged with Mother’s honeysuckle,
When he said, “Now,
My herd’s growing and I’m thinking I could feed a wife—”
That’s when I snapped, I howled, I ran.

And when a hole opened up, a beautiful black, in all the pastels of my mother’s sowing.
Let me fix the lie: Nobody grabbed, nobody pulled.
I jumped.

I thought it was a tiny earthquake, 
Thought I was killing myself,
Starting a long journey to Hades.
It was a more direct trip
Than I’d imagined—
I landed in his lap.

He just looked at me, said “Well,”
And kept driving his chariot down,
Flicked his leather reins near my face.
He did not give me flowers.
He never spoke of pigs.

Didn’t speak much at all. Just took me down in darkness
And did dark things.
I liked them.

I stumbled through his grey gardens, after,
Sore and smiling.
And the gardener said, “Little girl,
Little sunlit flower,
You belong in the world above.
Trust that they’ll come for you,
But while you wait
Don’t eat the food of the dead, for it will trap you here.”
And I said give me the fucking fruit.

But when I ate I could hear her howling,
See her spreading winter on the world.
My poor mother, who missed me after all;
My poor swineherd, starving.
Huddled up for warmth with the few he hadn’t eaten.

I spat out half the seeds.

So now I suffer through the summers,
Smile at the swineherd who tells me
Which shoat is off its feed.
Smile at my mother and walk behind her.
My powers have come to me now, and in her candy-colored wake I scatter
Sundew and flytrap, nettles and belladonna.

I smile and wait for November,
For when I come back to you.
Your clever cold hands and your hard black boots.
I don’t ask what the leather is made from.
I don’t think I want to know. 

And I said give me the fucking fruit.

Holy shit. I love this so much, I love this poem so much. 

I smile and wait for November,

omfg <3

Oh, look. She walks in beauty. Again.

This is fucking fantastic. nympheline, storyqdayx5d, this is totally up your alley.

(via guerrillamamamedicine)

bl.uk

Nigger, by Una. M. Marson

crankyskirt:

This poem appeared in the 1930s anti-racist newspaper The Keys, published by The League of Colored Peoples. Here’s more on Una Marson, Jamaican writer and feminist. Sad that this poem is still so relevant in the present.

They called me “Nigger,”
Those little white urchins,
They laughed and shouted
As I passed along the street,
They flung it at me:
“Nigger! Nigger Nigger!”

What made me keep my fingers
from choking the words in their throats?
What made my face grow hot,
The blood boil in my veins
And tears spring to my eyes?
What made me go to my room
And sob my heart away
Because white urchins
Called me “Nigger”?

What makes the dark West Indian
Fight at being called a Nigger?
What is there in that word
That should strike like a dagger
To the heart of Coloured men
And make them wince?

You of the white skinned Race,
You who profess such innocence,
I’ll tell you why ‘tis sin to tell
Your offspring Coloured folks are queer,
Black men are bogies and inferior far
To any creature with a skin made white.

You who feel that you are “spring
Of earth’s first blood,” your eyes
Are blinded now with arrogance.
With ruthlessness you seared
My peoples flesh, and now you still
Would crush their very sole
Add fierce insult to vilest injury.

We sill not be called “Niggers”
Since this was the favourite curse
Of those who drove the Negroes
To their death in days of slavery.
“A good for nothing Nigger,”
“Only one more Nigger gone”
They would repeat as though
He were a chicken or a rat.
That word then meant contempt,
All that was low and base,
And too refined for lower animals.

In later years when singing Negroes
Caused white men to laugh,
And show some interest in their art
They talked of “Nigger Minstrels”
And patronised the Negro,
And laughing at his songs
They could in nowise see
The thorns that pierced his heart.
“Nigger” was raised then to a Burlesque Show
And thus from Curse to Clown progressed
A coloured man was cause for merriment.
And though to-day he soars in every field
Some shrunken souls still say
“Look at that Nigger there”
As though they saw a green bloodhound
Or a pink puppy.

God keep my soul from  hating such mean souls,
God keep my soul from hating
Those who preach the Christ
And say with churlish smile
“This place is not for ‘Niggers’.”
God save their soul from this great sin
Of hurting human hearts that live
And think and feel in unison
With all humanity.

popelizbet

donate to icecreamsocialistslut’s chipin, get a haiku

popelizbet:

A friend of mine whose financial security took a serious hit when they ended an abusive relationship is in a real bind. If you follow icecreamsocialistslut, you already know the basics. Their living situation is tenuous, they have kids, they owe back rent to the tune of several hundred dollars due to “child support shenanigans” on the part of the abuser.

My friend alexandraerin has already made an offer to the people of tumblr: get icecreamsocialistslut’s ChipIn funded, and she will utilize her superpower of eating very dry things without drinking on camera for the amusement of all.

Like AE, I have nothing to sell.  However, I am a poet.  I write mostly speculative poetry (sci-fi, fantasy and horror).  I’ve appeared in several magazines, the recent feminist speculative poetry collection The Moment of Change, and I won last year’s Naked Girls Reading Literary Honors Award. And I want to help my friend icecreamsocialistslut.

So here’s the deal.  Donate $2 or more to the ChipIn, forward your paypal receipt to popelizbet at gmail dot com, and I will send you either a haiku (a proper one, with the seasonal reference and all) or a scifiku (like a haiku, but on a sci-fi/fantasy theme) — your choice.  All of these will be new: I’m not relying on some secret backlogged stash of short poetry.  If I ever submit the poem anywhere, I’ll dedicate it to you (first name only if you prefer) and let you know where it will appear.  Just tell me along with your forwarded Paypal receipt whether you prefer a haiku or a scifiku and whether you’d like any future dedication to be your full name, your first name, or no dedication.

I will do my best to have everyone’s poetry to them no later than Tuesday, August 7.  The ChipIn only lasts until the fourth, so time is of the essence.  It’s already 41% funded — your donation will help push it over the top.  

If you can’t donate, please reblog — you have no idea who out there in the wilds of tumblr might like their very own haiku in exchange for the cost of a lottery ticket.

Thank you so much!

april-is

"Wandering Around an Albuquerque Airport Terminal" by Naomi Shihab Nye

maybethings:

april-is:

After learning my flight was detained 4 hours,
I heard the announcement:
If anyone in the vicinity of gate 4-A understands any Arabic,
Please come to the gate immediately.

Well — one pauses these days. Gate 4-A was my own gate. I went there.
An older woman in full traditional Palestinian dress,
Just like my grandma wore, was crumpled to the floor, wailing loudly.
Help, said the flight service person. Talk to her. What is her
Problem? we told her the flight was going to be four hours late and she
Did this.

I put my arm around her and spoke to her haltingly.
Shu dow-a, shu- biduck habibti, stani stani schway, min fadlick,
Sho bit se-wee?

The minute she heard any words she knew — however poorly used -
She stopped crying.

She thought our flight had been canceled entirely.
She needed to be in El Paso for some major medical treatment the
Following day. I said no, no, we’re fine, you’ll get there, just late,

Who is picking you up? Let’s call him and tell him.
We called her son and I spoke with him in English.
I told him I would stay with his mother till we got on the plane and
Would ride next to her — Southwest.

She talked to him. Then we called her other sons just for the fun of it.

Then we called my dad and he and she spoke for a while in Arabic and
Found out of course they had ten shared friends.

Then I thought just for the heck of it why not call some Palestinian
Poets I know and let them chat with her. This all took up about 2 hours.

She was laughing a lot by then. Telling about her life. Answering
Questions.

She had pulled a sack of homemade mamool cookies — little powdered
Sugar crumbly mounds stuffed with dates and nuts — out of her bag —
And was offering them to all the women at the gate.

To my amazement, not a single woman declined one. It was like a
Sacrament. The traveler from Argentina, the traveler from California,
The lovely woman from Laredo — we were all covered with the same
Powdered sugar. And smiling. There are no better cookies.

And then the airline broke out the free beverages from huge coolers —
Non-alcoholic — and the two little girls for our flight, one African
American, one Mexican American — ran around serving us all apple juice
And lemonade and they were covered with powdered sugar too.

And I noticed my new best friend — by now we were holding hands —
Had a potted plant poking out of her bag, some medicinal thing,

With green furry leaves. Such an old country traveling tradition. Always
Carry a plant. Always stay rooted to somewhere.

And I looked around that gate of late and weary ones and thought,
This is the world I want to live in. The shared world.

Not a single person in this gate — once the crying of confusion stopped
— has seemed apprehensive about any other person.

They took the cookies. I wanted to hug all those other women too.
This can still happen anywhere.

Not everything is lost.

OW OW OW MY EYES MY EYES

(via jhameia)

senhoritaugly

blck-grrl:

“With dynamic performances from poets and musicians alike, THE REVIVAL weaves a salon styled night of artistry, libations and genuine fellowship. Historically, queer collectives have hosted artist ‘salons’in their homes— because there was nowhere else to go. This effort honors a tradition born out of necessity, and is at once a sanctuary (every leg of the tour takes place in a private home) and a concert”

The Revival is a salon styled poetry tour of Queer Women of Color poets,artists,and allies.

Please donate to their Kickstarter project (Which ends by Tuesday the 17th) in order for them to take their badassery all over the U.S & Canada by helping them pay for food/travel/lodging 

regrettoinform.org

Y’all gotta read this poem.

ninasafiri:

Göttin der Dummheit: Two Women

arielnietzsche:

I am a woman.
I am a woman.

I am a woman born of a woman whose man owned a factory.
I am a woman born of a woman whose man labored in a factory.

I am a woman whose man wore silk suits, who constantly watched his weight.
I am a woman whose man wore tattered clothing, whose heart was constantly strangled by hunger.

I am a woman who watched two babies grow into beautiful children.
I am a woman who watched two babies die because there was no milk.

I am a woman who watched twins grow into popular college students with summers abroad.
I am a woman who watched three children grow, but with bellies stretched from no food.

But then there was a man;
But then there was a man;

And he talked about the peasants getting richer by my family getting poorer.
And he told me of days that would be better and he made the days better.

We had to eat rice.
We had rice.

We had to eat beans!
We had beans.

My children were no longer given summer visas to Europe.
My children no longer cried themselves to sleep.

And I felt like a peasant.
And I felt like a woman.

A peasant with a dull, hard, unexciting life.
Like a woman with a life that sometimes allowed a song.

And I saw a man.
And I saw a man.

And together we began to plot with the hope of the return to freedom.
I saw his heart begin to beat with hope of freedom, at last.

Someday, the return to freedom.
Someday freedom.

And then,
But then,

One day,
One day,

There were plans overhead and guns firing close by.
There were planes overhead and guns firing in the distance.

I gathered my children and went home.
I gathered my children and ran.

And the guns moved farther and farther away.
But the guns moved closer and closer.

And then, they announced that freedom had been restored!
And then they came, young boys really.

They came into my home along with my man.
They came and found my man.

Those men whose money was almost gone.
They found all of the men whose lives were almost their own.

And we all had drinks to celebrate.
And they shot them all.

The most wonderful martinis.
They shot my man.

And then they asked us to dance.
And they came for me.

Me.
For me, the woman.

And my sisters.
For my sisters.

And then they took us.
Then they took us.

They took us to dinner at a small private club.
They stripped from us the dignity we had gained.

And they treated us to beef.
And then they raped us.

It was one course after another.
One after another they came after us.

We nearly burst we were so full.
Lunging, plunging—sisters bleeding, sisters dying.

It was magnificent to be free again!
It was hardly a relief to have survived.

The beans have almost disappeared now.
The beans have disappeared.

The rice—I’ve replaced it with chicken or steak.
The rice, I cannot find it.

And the parties continue night after night to make up for all the time wasted.
And my silent tears are joined once more by the midnight cries of my children.

This poem was written by a working class Chilean woman in 1973, shortly after Chile’s socialist president, Salvador Allende, was overthrown. A U.S. missionary translated the work and brought it with her when she was forced to leave Chile. This is to be read by two people, one reading the bold-faced type and one reading the regular type.

The period of rice and beans for the poor woman in the poem occurs after the election of the socialist, Salvador Allende, as president of Chile. Allende was elected in 1970. He was overthrown in a military coup in September 1973 after a long period of destabilization launched by the wealthy classes and supported by the US government and US corporations such as International Telephone and Telegraph. Along with thousands of others, Allende was killed by the military. The coup, under the leadership of Gen. Augusto Pinochet, launched a period of severe hardship for the working and peasant classes. Although Chile currently has a civilian government, the military is still the country’s most powerful institution.

(via cabell)

black-culture
Negro blood is sure powerful because just one drop of black blood makes a colored man. One drop? Black is powerful.

Langston Hughes (via black-culture)

(via masteradept)

A Pony on the Balcony: My Complicated Mourning (re Adrienne Rich)

wildunicornherd:

poemsofthedead:

DO NOT READ THE ONE COMMENT UNLESS YOU WANT TO FEEL COMPELLED TO PUNCH REPEATEDLY IN THE FACE THE NEAREST WHITE WOMAN.

But I really enjoyed/appreciated this post.

Also, a thought on this part:

Does it matter? Yes. It matters because we salute her contribution, but if she had spoken out against the inclusion of African-American women or suggested that Jewish women or Latinas were somehow less than human, we would talk about that. We would critique that.

Because I do not know the author, but I wonder (out loud to my cat, even), “WHO IS THIS MAGICAL ‘We’???” Because… well… because that shit happens ALL THE TIME still today and a whole lot of feminists do NOT speak out, do not critique it, and actively uphold it. So I’d really really love it if well-meaning people didn’t act like the world has it’s racist shit together and trans* issues are “the new racism” or whatever.

yeeeeeeeeeeeah that was where I stopped reading because I fucking hate that argument.

“if someone said that about black people”

NEWSFLASH! THAT SHIT GETS SAID ABOUT BLACK PEOPLE ALL THE TIME AND NO ONE GETS CALLED ON IT

I’M SORRY, YOUR CONNECTION TO REALITY IS TOO TENUOUS FOR ME TO CONTINUE PAYING ATTENTION TO YOU