...common roles illustrate how Black women, and their sexuality, have often been synonymous with deviance. And reclaiming, repackaging, and/or discarding the roles has given women agency; a control denied the Good Girl who is essentially invisible. She needs that.
Breathing Lessons 101 is heading to Charlottesville Virginia on Friday, May 8th! I'll be reading as part of the Reading Series at the Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative along with author of the novel Nothing Left to Burn, Jay Varner, and poet, novelist, and editor Brittany Cavallaro. Exciting times, y'all--be there and/or please share! https://www.facebook.com/events/346357012230460/
She remembered holding his hand, thumbing the meaty part under his thumb. And she remembered how she hardly ever held his hand. Or smiled. She remembered how he smelled—soapy—and his minty breath. He said he brushed his teeth because he planned to kiss her. She remembered him fingering her eyebrows. And his eyes. She remembered [...]
After lunch he lays in her lap. She twists his hair while they watch game shows and soaps. He feels her up; she slaps his hand. Your head is heavy. She twists some more. They go out for a walk holding hands. His father’s neighborhood does not have the eyes of hers or his mom’s and as free as she feels here she knows the escape is not permanent. So when we gonna do this again?
But he has known since he met her that the girl on the other line owns herself. Only you surprise yourself by how much. You worry when he laughs, “Just wondering.” But there is more than wondering you hear.
A Guide to Picking Scabs She was a melancholic girl then she was a young woman with a sweet public face and private potty mouth. She felt unloved but mostly unnoticed, unsure, and determined. (To be better wasn’t her mission; to deal or die was). She spent an inordinate amount of time considering her own [...]
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First Love,I just wanted to thank you. I already hear you: for what? Well, I don’t know how to name it exactly, but I can try to explain it.I didn’t believe I was special back then. Not really. Okay maybe. But not special. I wasn’t exactly convinced by you, but you worked at convincing me. [...]