Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The History At Home | 13. Mirrors #1

1. collage

ebony cosmo vogue
make up...........lovers......things
to posess....................changed

chameleon, spelunker
tightrope walker...........tettered
into glass chewing harridan

crystal fragments........ spit
in the enemy’s I

walk like Perseus
clutching a mirror...........accept
only my head and winged horses.

2. NOTE: Loving Ourselves In Spite Of Ourselves

Being a sane, healthy, thinking person today takes an inordinate amount of work. The sheer volume of psychological pollution astounds me. Trying to balance fighting off the absorption of negative imagery with just plain living one’s life is a tricky trick. Sometimes I find myself bashing myself in the head, saying, What is wrong with you, girl? Why can’t you just be like other people? Why can’t you just be content? Just watch the telly; read the magazines; hang with your friends and family and shut up!” Nothing is wrong with those ways of being in the world. And nothing is wrong with me. So, I’m faced with the challenge of trying to realise the me that I envision. And sometimes, I drag others into the struggle.

As I posted yesterday, the television has gotten the best of my husband and son. A few months ago, I came home and busted them watching commercial television. When the commercials began, I shot that look at my husband; began to open my mouth; and then suddenly Winston was shouting at the television. “No, thank you!” He yelled, “ No, thank you! No, thank you!” He didn’t stop until they ended. My husband gave me a sheepish grin. It was impossible to be angry.

The no-thank-you-affirmation happens consistently whenever commercials come on the screen. (They’d obviously been at this a lot longer than I realised. It can be little annoying. But, I suppose it is better than having him sink dreamily into a list of wishes never to be fulfilled. Sometimes, he slips. He stops; looks critically at the screen and then with great surprise says , “Yes, thank you.” Regardless - he is conscious of the fact that “people are trying to make him unhappy with his lovely life.”

I suppose where I’m going with this is that creating the kind of person you want yourself - or children - demands that you remain conscious. And today consciousness means taking time to eschew the media so that when you dream - they are your own dreams. Because the great evil every power doesn’t want you to embark on the adventure towards dreams of your own devising. Accepting that means accepting a certain amount of narcissism or self-focus. Or quite simply valuing yourself enough to love yourself.

3. NOTE: Claiming What Is Important - A Chant To Not Feel Like A Bad Person

Me - all flawed, imperfect, short attention span, self-absorbed me.
There is a certain power in that. Glory! Glory! Glory!

Me - I can think my own thoughts; self-direct towards growth.
Serve others without short-changing myself.

Me - these are my big arms, these are my big thighs, this is my big head.
I have space enough to hold myself and others with this body.

Me - looks in the mirror. Spends an hour in front of the mirror.
spend a day in front of the mirror. Glory! Glory! Glory!

Oshun loves her mirror.
Oshun can be so generous;
so full of abundance and romance;
so seductive and alluring;
so nurturing and vain and validating.

Me - will pick up my mirror and look without judgement.
Me - will use myself as a mirror.
Me -will the embrace the mirror others gift me.

Oshun can
adore, be transfixed, captivated
by her perfect, divine self
- in spite of her perfect, divine self.
I can learn something here.

4. NOTE: Searching For A Mirror I Haven’t Made Myself

All of this internal validation is really groovy. But, human beings are simply not designed to be our own power plants. This is why we tell stories. This is why we share what we are thinking. We need to connect to others.

This blogathon has been such an enlightening experience for me. Thank you Deesha and Yvette. Here - mid-month, I am coming to understand that what I have been writing about is my inner child. The one who still sulks, pouts and catalogues every infringement. The one who is still searching for some external approval or vote of confidence. That small, brown girl in an all-white private school who simply wanted ........ I don’t know what.

So in her honour tonight and because I got an email from a dear friend this morning about some of my musings....I want to acknowledge the wondrous miracle that modern Brown girls do have an external mirror as large as the hall of mirrors at Versailles. And I want to make it easy for their guides to provide it to them.

4. My Inner Child Loves:

Soul Looks Back In Wonder, Tom Feelings

Marriage of the Rain Goddess: A South African Myth, Margaret Olivia Wolfson

The Girl Who Spun Gold, Virginia Hamilton

The Invisible Princess, Faith Ringgold

HerStories, Virginia Hamilton

Wild Wild Sunflower Child Anna
, Nancy White Carlstrom (Glory!)

Earth Mother, Ellen Jackson

To Every Thing There Is A Season, Leo & Diane Dillon

Sukey & The Mermaid, Robert D. San Souci

, Leontyne Price

Chinye: A West African Folk Tale, Obi Onyefulu

Cendrillon: A Carribbean Cinderella

Anklet For A Princess
, Meredith Brucker

The Talking Eggs, Robert D. sans Souci

Beautiful Blackbir
d, Ashley Bryan

Okay enough for tonight. For boys, please visit my first list on Amazon,

Little Brown Boy's Quintessential Library

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