This month has been intense... especially for me up in the wintery wetlands of the North... bitter cold days, snow storm after snowpocolyse and then some more... so I've been in hibernation mostly - working, creating, and in deep reflection about all kinds of movements and planning for what's next in my journey. I'm praying for springtime and sunshine and truthfully ready for summer heat! So much going on and too much to share... so just a recap - writing, teaching, and deep in the thick of figuring out my life... I feel like many of us that it's time for change... we are in times of crisis and major shifts in planetary consciousness. Our time is now... and so with all of that, this post is just about sharing a couple few things I've been working on: like this project I started with a good friend of mine (Tei Okamoto) last year - called Love and Affection. And this year, we have officially launched our website and creative partnership called Current Tides. Our first project is in progress!
The Love and Affection Project is an oral history project that will be the first archive of its kind to explore and record the lives of those who were affected by the epidemic as a child and/or young adult and lost either one or both parents/guardians to AIDS related complications. We seek to hear, record, and remember the stories and events that shaped a young person, now grown, whose parent/guardian/caretaker died of HIV/AIDS. While the project is based in the United States, we aim to include many of the voices of the epidemic internationally. We also acknowledge communities that are most affected by HIV/AIDS and would like to privilege voices and communities that are marginalized and underrepresented.
Creative partners Angelique V. Nixon and Tei Okamoto work actively in various communities and are dedicated to radical movements for social change. They are invested in contributing to the oral history archive of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. They have engaged in preliminary research through talking with people living with HIV who have adult children. Furthermore, both of them have been affected by HIV/AIDS - losing loved ones, caring for loved ones, and one of them (Angelique) lost a parent to AIDS in 1996.
We have both experienced the myriad ways that stories about HIV/AIDS and death remain silenced - particularly in marginalized communities (i.e. poor and working class communities, immigrant communities, queer communities, and communities of color - and across the intersections of these). Together, we come from and represent these communities - poor, working class, migrant, queer, and of color - and though we exist at different intersections, we connect through shared experiences. Hence, our investment in this project is multifaceted - personal, political, spiritual, and emotional.
Find us on our Facebook Page and/or email me at angeliquevnixon @ gmail.com for more info.
And another thing I've been working on... excited to share on my blog -- my essay just published in The Feminist Wire as part of the Audre Lorde Forum celebrating her 80th Birthday. I was so honored to be invited and included in this powerful collection. During my final edits of the piece, I decided to start the essay reflecting on the power of her poetry and how much especially The Black Unicorn continues to be a force in my life -- especially the poem "A Woman Speaks" --
"I have been woman / for a long time / beware my smile / I am treacherous with old magic / and the noon’s new fury / with all your wide futures / promised / I am / woman / and not white."
-- which inspired the title of my essay... and here is the link:
"The Magic and Fury of Audre Lorde: Feminist Praxis and Pedagogy"