Friday, February 8, 2008

BHC: A Black Woman's Smile

This video is a poem performed by Ty Gray El. I was forwarded it and thought it's a good watch. I'm embedding the video, watch it, then read my comment below please.

But what, besides "her man", makes the Black woman smile? I'm with 90 percent of the message, but the "Black man" come back and take responsibility ending was not my cup of tea. Your thoughts?


Dark Daughta said...

I think I understood it but the heterocentrism is thick and deep.

I started to feel pulled out of the place where I could nod and just agree almost immediately.

The christian stuff was fierce and unrelenting, too...but I got the references.

There's also the amerikkka-centrism. I didn't see myself there...a caribbean born woman raised in kkkanada.

I saw my unsmiling self smile waiting in the wings...perpetually waiting in the wings...I heard all sorts of people carrying on about me being too harsh, unappeasable, not nice, too difficult. too demanding... I got that bit loud and clear.

When the poet started talking about how no other woman has had to go through what Black wimmin have been through, I thought about the trail of tears, about massacred Native babies, about raped and mutilated Native wimmin, about Native warriors fighting to the death because there was no other choice for them, here on this land where we eventually sold ourselves and them out for such a low, low, too low price.

I think others have experienced hardship and horror.

I don't think it negates what Black wimmin have been through. I don't think our suffering erases what the original denizens of this land have been through.


Anonymous said...

where are you at? this is not an appropriate last post...

Anonymous said...

pretty poem. good points dumi and daughta.

alot of what was said could apply to any woman of color. The nokomis (grandma) in the black and white photo could have been any woman of color.

its art, its meant to be pretty and have a nice bow on it. Mr. Gray El wrote what he knew. though, I do find it interesting that black artists and academics tend to use sweeping terminology like "...ever", "in the history of the world/man/the country" etc. when referring to black folks' plight. I hope this doesnt mean that they are forgetting what should NOT be forgotten.

"my people were enslaved before yours were" the jewish man sadly reminds the black man. the native says nothing, because hes not there.

not here to start a pissing contest between the races about who is the most beleguered in history. nor do i want to single out black folks for doing this (plenty of native writers say things like " recorded history" while some of the SAME SHIT is happening TODAY in other parts of the world.) just taking notice.

Thanks for the posts Dumi.


Liz said...

Peace Dumi,

I agree with you. There's power in our brother-poet's voice, and it resonates with many of us....yet and still, there are many things that make us smile (our brothers are definitely included...MOST certainly, but our beings are deeper...sometimes the smell of the spring blossoms interrupts our hurried pace, and our smiles unapologetically stretch forth...we find joy in the little things too.

And yes, I agree with my sister's point...our native sisters have endured much on this soil as well.

I'm a firm believer that it's our responsibility to make humanity smile...all of give our children (here and future) reasons to smile. This call is upon all of us.

With all that said, I still felt honored in this video, and the love it was created with has not gone unrecognized.