More to come next week

Face of a large and ornate yellow and black clock, photo by Maksym Yemelyanov

Hi Folks,

It’s Thursday, and I would normally release a new blog post today.  However, my next piece will come out on Thursday, November 17th instead.

Whenever I write a long post, I tend to break it into two parts.  This is because the posts take several hours to write on my end, and also make for a lot of content for people to read (often what appears to be too much content for one post).  When I originally wrote Reflections of a Biracial Sellout, I intended it to be a two part post.  However, I eventually decided that something about the piece would be lost if I broke it up.  So, I published it as one long piece.

As a result, the post I had planned for this week has already been published.  I will post new content again next Thursday.  In the meantime, have a beautiful week.

Many Thanks,

Dara

Reflections of a Biracial Sellout.

Stamp mark reading "Sold Out", photo by Oxlock
Dara Burwell, Coffee Shop

Dara Burwell

I look into the eyes of my friend whose crisp gaze synthesizes many ways of knowing- beyond the limits of the physical world, reading into me soul-to-soul.  Does she know that this is a power she carries?  This woman seated within herself, sharpness coupled with deep gentleness and a voice softly spoken.  She tells me that she struggles with feelings of being a sellout.

A sellout?  I tilt my head to look at my magnificent friend.  The idea is so out of alignment that I don’t think it could have occurred to me.  If I hold my head this way, will some previously unknown aspects of her appear?  This intelligent, thoughtful, human, committed, knowing woman thinks of herself, in part, as a sellout?  Perhaps I would have understood better if she had declared herself to be made of marbles.

But I can certainly relate.  How many have held the same experience? Read More

Demystifying Monsters: A Piece of the Journey

Bare trees and blue sky reflecting on the surface of still water, photo by Luminouslens

A few weeks back, the women attending the Women of Color Writing Circle graciously agreed to workshop my blog piece “Forgiving” Men and Other Oppressors before I published the second part.  They were thoughtful and introspective, and one woman suggested that I elaborate on the section that refers to demystifying monsters in a future post.  I agree with her assessment, and immediately thought to refer back to the source that initiated that set of thoughts: Nicole Hurt.  I have asked Nicole to write about her perspective on permanently regarding the people who have harmed us as monsters.

Ultimately, I plan to further explore many aspects around healing- both through my own and other’s thinking- and wrote “Forgiving” Men and Other Oppressors as a beginning point for these contemplations.  Thank you, Nicole, for skillfully providing the aspect below:

 

Couched in the syncopated rhythms

of habitually (re)enacted violence,

I glimpse snags in costumes

we have donned without thinking,

feel holes in the stitching

where skin shows through…

 

Image of Nicole Hurt

Nicole Hurt

My father was the first perpetrator of violence in my life, my first monster.  And I wrote this poem as testament to a moment of shifting for me, a moment of claiming power for myself in an interaction that could have followed the same script, the same roles.  Where I was able to finally see him not as an all-powerful monster but as someone who had chosen, in his privilege and as a human being, to violently enact his own wounding on the women closest to him, the women over whom he wielded power.  And where I was able, in that shifting moment and moving forward, to choose to act differently.  To step out of conflating my experiences of victimization with being defined, as a human being, by powerlessness, and in so doing, no longer allowing him his role as monster. Read More