What In The Hell Was She Talking About...

by Nia R. Glover

I was very amused and entertained by the performance that I saw the other day. I was at a majority African American Poetry reading and a white woman came up to speak. I believe her poem was entitled "Words." She spoke about how society was locking up the youth and spending money on prisons instead of solution for the youth. She spoke of people being arrested because of the color of their skin, but what I really remember is how she spoke of her black skin, and referred to her black spirit. I was not impressed and I must admit I was a little pissed. She quoted Dr. King and she knew some African chants and an African Dance, you will have to do more than simulate or word play.

She was right about one thing it is differently a feeling, the feeling when you walk in the store and the cashier follows you until you purchase something or leave. It is the feeling inside when they replay the death of Dr. King, and more than his quotes it is what he stood for, me. I am not hating, I am glad you know my history, I am glad you know of my rich ancestry. However, my black spirit is something you do not know, my tears and fierce blood flow. To have a Black spirit requires you to be a part of the sky that aligns the planets and stars to form the consolation and situations that connect me with my brothers and sisters. The feeling when you heard the Rodney King verdict; it is the feeling when you watch Mississippi Burning. It's the tears I cried when a young man died and I didn't even know his name but I felt his Mother's pain, when he lost his life at 7 eleven that night.

When I think of the African Women or an African tribe it is more than just there chants that come to mind but the way they were bonded in chains and the cries from a mother being separated from her children. If I go and read in front of 'them' if I recite Bruce Springsteen will anyone clap for me...or give a heartfelt rendition of the rainbow coalition will everyone be amazed or will I sound silly saying I have the spirit of a Hilly Billy. When I go for a job interview, when I am pulled over by a white cop, when they watch me while I shop. No. You may have sympathy, you may have empathy you may even relate, but how it touched me down deep in my soul, you will never know.

What In The Hell Was She Talking About... by Nia R. Glover

© Copyright 2002. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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