I seriously need an all black retreat! #wilderness #noelectricity #Africansonly #ancestorworship #feedmysoul #ancestorscalling
Sunday, May 28, 2017
Stories Wrung from Bone
There is an ever growing need for sacred Black space. I feel it more and more. More of my precious brothers and sisters are seeking a space where they can breathe a collective sigh of relief, if only for a short while. There has gone up a call for a community retreat. I agree that this is something that needs to happen all over the US. Those of us in the daily trenches need time set apart, on the land, in the spirit, singing songs, beating drums, telling our stories, nourishing our bodies and our souls. I didn't know how badly I needed it, until a dear Sister posted this"
When I read this I thought immediately of the passage from the book, "Beloved". I thought of the gathering in the field on a Saturday afternoon of the entire Black community. In lieu of worship to a cruel white god, they were led in a worship of their own Black selves. Baby Suggs leads them in what is the purest expression of love: "Here, . . . in this place, we flesh; Flesh that weeps, laughs; flesh that dances on bare feet in grass. Love it, love it hard. Yonder they do not love your flesh. They despise it. . . . Love your hands! Love them. Raise them up and kiss them, touch others with them, pat them together, stroke them on your face, ‘cause they don’t love that either. You got to love it, You! And no, they ain’t in love with your mouth. . . . You got to love it. This is flesh that I’m talking about here. Flesh that needs to be loved. Feet that need to rest and to dance, backs that need support; shoulders that need strong arms. . . . More than eyes and feet. More than your life-holding womb and your life-giving private parts, hear em now, love your heart. For this is the prize" I thought of that worship in the clearing. The worship of an outcast people. That's how I imagined the OP's request being manifest. That in that holy clearing, the modern day descendants of the original worshippers gather, to find respite from a world that does not love them, by profoundly loving one another and themselves. I love her admonishment to "love it, love it hard" We must love hard. We must move our feet hard. Raise our voices in song hard. We must beat our drums hard. We must love ourselves hard, love our families hard, maintain our communities hard. We must educate our children our hard, grow our own food hard, birth our babies hard, invest and divest hard. We must teach our own hard, grow our own hard, pool our resources hard, own the land hard, build on that land hard, bear fruit on the land hard. Our inheritance from the world is inequity and despair, but we can change that. We can claim our rightful inheritance. We are our own best thing. That is the lesson. It is just not the OP who is tired and in need of respite. All my people are tired and in need in respite. I can stand in the field and bid them come, and love their beautiful selves. I see now, I was born to this. I will take up the work of my mother before me and her mother before her. I will call forth the ancestral call to worship, the call to prayer. The call to work hard, and play hard and rest hard. The call to love hard the Black bodies that move through this world, buffeted on every side. We will build a fire under the full moon as our ancestors did. Men, women, children, Black bodies connected to the earth. We will dance the dances that emerge from our bodies, sing the songs that emerge from our souls, we are the descendants of the stolen. Our bloodlines are severed from our original mother, but our bones remember. Our stories are hidden away for safekeeping in our DNA. Only in sacred Black space, will they be coaxed to the surface.