Thursday, June 21, 2012

Love Never Changes

Kai's SONG OF THE WEEK: "Love Never Changes" is from Ledisi's 2009 Album, "Turn Me Loose." If you don't know about need to know. Ledisi WikiLedisi Official Website , Lyrics .

Kai's Thoughts:  

Love, it will never go/ Love, even when you go/ It never leaves, no, no/ Love never changes, love

Love just is. It exists above, below, and all around us, but what's most important is the love we all carry within. We must cultivate this love within, especially as queer people of color. We must practice loving ourselves and one another fiercely.  As my body goes through stages of healing I have had some difficulty looking at myself, my chest, right now as it is. I know that my scars will fade and in reality I'm healing really fast (Thanks to all of you who have supported and continue to support me). But it is still difficult for me to sit with the scars as they are now without wandering into some future moment where my body is fully healed and my nipple pigmentation has returned. There is nothing wrong with thinking about the future or even planning it, but when that future or even some past has the power to take us away from the blessing of this present, then we miss the opportunity for presence. It is sometimes difficult to look at oneself right where you are, right now. In this very moment can you affirm the beauty of you? The love that is you? I affirm the love I have for myself and my body right now in this moment (Take a second to do the same for yourself, because you deserve it). This is my struggle these days and it can feel stifling. I am practicing tapping into my(self) love, the unconditional love that I have for myself, it is where I want to find my will to survive. I often find that the love I have for others comes easy--I forgive easily. I love hard. I love long. For you...But what happens when it's just me alone in a room? When I search for some of those things to give to myself, sometimes I can't find them. I'm working on it.

Marlon Riggs
I'm inspired by so many, but the artists Lyle Ashton Harris and Marlon Riggs stand out to me today. These artists throw themselves into their work, into their art, and it feels like life. Their art is life that refuses death even in the face of death, they choose love. Through their art they give love boldly. I am always so moved when I watch Riggs,' Black is...Black Ain't  because his film is a gift of love to all that watch it, but you can also see how Riggs' loved himself enough to share this vision with us. He was dying and he allowed us to witness his transition from this world to the next. He did not go easily. He left us road-maps, tools, art and every time I revisit his art I revisit him in all his beauty and brilliance. I am thankful that he took the time to make art with love and persistence. Riggs and Harris like so many other queer people of color,  refused to be silent. They were and we are the people who survive even though they/we were never supposed to. Or better said by Audre Lorde, "For to survive in this dragon we call America, we have had to learn this first and most vital lesson – that we were never meant to survive. Not as human beings." We are miracles.  

Lyle Ashton Harris gives us “Redemptive Narcissism” as '“...self-love... a form of resistance to the tyranny of mediocrity. I see the mirror not only as a site of trauma and death – Narcissus falling in to drown – but as a space for rigorous meditation, cleansing and recuperation.”' How might we use redemptive narcissism as a tool? What will you do today to show your(self) love?
Lyle Ashton Harris, "Brotherhood"

Today I give love back to me
Told I was just too Black to be
Too queer to see
that there simply wasn't anymore room
For we
We who dare to love bodies like our own
Black, queer, scarred, hard and soft
Brown, shy, fierce, and brave,
We could never just behave
Could never completely be cadged
Perhaps our bodies, never our souls
But I want it all, 
Back to me
I give love to me courageously.