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How do you Authenticate a Person
Her red lipstick pops like a cherry ice on a hot day.
She's tall and thin,
every man's crush.
She speaks in high educated
and her manners are top-notch.
She's a role model, everyone's dream
I tell her she's beautiful
She looks in the mirror and says “what is beautiful?”
She takes off her long hair,
She takes off her voluminous lashes,
She is no longer smiling.
She wipes off the red lipstick.
She imagines eating a bacon cheeseburger with cheese fries,
she feels happy and free and she dances to the beat of her heart.
a knock at the door
She turns to the mirror in her natural state.
I tell her again she is beautiful
She looks in the mirror again and says “what is beautiful?”
she applies her long hair
she applies her red lipstick
she applies her lashes
She applies her makeup
She ensures she looks thin
Another knock on the door
She opens the door, she exits
They say to her “ oh my God you are soooo beautiful”
She looks and walks away
She reminds herself not to cry
and just like they say
“I am beautiful”
This poem is a response to hardtruth #65:#65, #fakenews #realtalk #realtruth about black girls’ liberation
#65, #fakenews #realtalk #realtruth about black girls’ liberation
March 27, 2017
This #100hardtruths was shared with me by my often-collaborator, the filmmaker, Cheryl Dunye.
“Although the numbers of girls that are missing are unclear and the circumstances of their disappearances are continents and lifestyles away, we really don’t care do we? But for me, it’s time that black girls form a global army to take back the night …"
An Instagram post claiming 14 girls had disappeared in D.C. over a 24-hour period went viral across social media on Thursday March 24 2017
“Behind every report of a missing young person is a family’s difficult story. Though almost all young people reported missing in D.C. quickly come home, readjusting isn’t easy. News4’s Kristin Wright spoke with the mother of one D.C. teenager who went missing Monday — and now is home with her family, who are still dealing with the emotions they felt when she was missing.” (Published Friday, March 24, 2017)
This lead me back in time to this story from the New York Times:
“LAGOS, Nigeria — Two and a half years after nearly 300 girls were kidnapped from a school in northeastern Nigeria, the government said on Thursday that 21 of them had been freed, the biggest breakthrough in an ordeal that has shocked the world and laid bare the deadly instability gripping large parts of the country. Boko Haram, the radical Islamist group that has killed thousands of civilians, overrun villages and terrorized the region, seized the girls from a school in the town of Chibok on April 14, 2014.”
Which lead me back to this fictional film …
“Born in Flames is a 1983 documentary-style feminist science fiction film by Lizzie Bordent hat explores racism, classism, sexism and heterosexism in an alternative United Statessocialist democracy,” according to Richard Brody. in a recent reevaluation of the film in The New Yorker. ‘All oppressed people have a right to violence,’ activist Flo Kennedy posits. ‘It’s like the right to pee: you’ve gotta have the right place, you’ve gotta have the right time, you’ve gotta have the appropriate situation. And believe me, this is the appropriate situation.'”
from “Born in Flames” (Lizzie Borden, 1983)
When our fictional truths and are truthful fictions become blurred, what does a black girl/woman do? Thoughts?
- “The Political Science Fiction of Born in Flames,” Richard Brody
- F is for Phony: Fake Documentary and Truth’s Undoing, Alexandra Juhasz and Jesse Lerner, eds.
- “Hashtag Feminism, #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen, and the Other #FemFuture,” Susan Loza
- “Queer Feminist Media Praxis,” Ada #5
To see a poetic response to this hardtruth:How do you Authenticate a Person