Wednesday, April 30, 2008

the places you'll be going.. mmm

so you know when you read so many books as a kid or watch so many movies

and then you get to a point when they are still good
but you aren't satisfied

so then you have to go and write the book you want to read
and maybe star in the movie you'd like to see.

Then you go and try and live the life you'd like to see happen.. then you go all off and try to do something risky and scary for which there seems like there's really no blueprint or man you can't even do a google search to find what you're looking for..

That's blankness .. or goodness.. sometimes there seems like there's no hand to lead you.

But then you go ahead. Because you have to. What else will you do if you don't go ahead.

As scary as it seems sometimes.. I wouldn't I don't think know what else to do.

Though sometimes it actually is a little scary when it's you! Aww man it's you and your life!
And other people! And the world! And everything! oooh and you again.

I'm circumscribing my life you know. These are just my present thoughts on the matter.

Then you find something!
And it's good.

And you keep on going.

People are graduating these days you know.

And everyone always gets them "Oh! The Places You Will Go!" by Dr. Seuss.

Mm Mm Mm.. Goodness gracious. Yes.


plus when i was in the first grade and first starting in school i used to make these like mazes up
in my journal, in which i was supposed to be writing whatever was on the board.

So I'd draw little boxes with some words or.. i don't know if i could write so well then.. but maybe it had arrows or those dots or -- -- -- things to lead people and you had to get to the end.. and this was all on notebook paper in those spiral notebooks. I always wanted my friend Nailah to do it, because she sat next to me at my table in Ms. Owen's room.

Does this life sound familiar?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Mary Seacole

This is a Black Woman from Jamaica
The true to life adventures
Mary Seacole (1805-1881)
Look her up.
We are out there.
We are in here.

Yes. We can do this ish. ..

Signing out and Believin..

-The Peoples

Research and development

Dear World,

We aren't MIA. We're R&D.

Research and development. Research and development. Research and development.

Much love,

the projected peoples

Monday, April 28, 2008

belief in something, perhaps yourself



"It is a long journey, Almeyda ... You must create the roads as you travel them."

Gayl Jones, Song for Anninho

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Happy B-day Playa

On this day, or another one defined as  April 19th 1986, Intisar
came to earth from some unknown planet scientists have yet to discover.
Hopefully she did not come to this planet to destroy us all. 
Hopefully, its just the oppposite.
So,in keeping hope alive I would like to say

Thursday, April 17, 2008

In the very earliest time

Magic Words

after Nalungiaq (Translated by Edward Field)

In the very earliest time,
when both people and animals lived on earth,
a person could become an animal if he wanted to
and an animal could become a human being.
Sometimes they were people
and sometimes animals
and there was no difference.
All spoke the same language.
That was the time when words were like magic.
The human mind had mysterious powers.
A word spoken by chance
might have strange consequences.
It would suddenly come alive
and what people wanted to happen could happen—
all you had to do was say it.
Nobody can explain this:
That’s the way it was.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

quote note

"Myth is something out of time, and when it is relived it is recreated every moment that a group of people gathers around it, thinks about it, talks about it."

-one of the creators of the film Quilombo on myth

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Isa Nakazawa-Palimpsest-

My dear friend Isa Nakazawa's Senior Thesis.
Click photo for up close details.


What happens to a dream deferred?

Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore--
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over--
like a syrupy sweet?

Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.

Or does it explode?


There was something I had to say. I hope I can proceed towards getting my schoolwork done after saying it. I'm trying to find some strength here.

When we were in Djibouti the three of us would sit in the hotel room. It was just me and my sisters. We'd come back every night to that place and we'd talk every night. Maybe someone would be on the bed or on the chair or the cot and we'd talk about realities and things. And continuing the efforts we had begun and the viewpoint from which we were looming was large and the thing I wanted to do most was come back to Wesleyan and share all that I had learned.

We were seeing macro and micro then. There is a viewpoint that comes when you can look from above over the skies. We saw so many connections when we were in Djibouti, between the experiences and needs and desires of people and young people in Djibouti and back home. We saw so many connections between the global and local experiences of black people and people of color. The force of our desire to be! The force of our desire to be! God! It kills and makes alive.

If I note anything of what I've learned through this project it has been this desire and this global force of us to be! to make some kind of way for ourselves and our dreams, extensions of ourselves and our living to be. It defies words that desire. That desire and that wish that I feel from us as a global people is so strong. It pummels me over. I won't try to explain it here, but..It is so strong. It is both a legacy of everyone before us and always new. You can feel it in the pit of your belly, when you look around you and at yourself

As young people You greatly just want to be in the world?! Oh goodness, you really just want to be! so Hard. And you wonder if there is there a place for you? Is there room for you this brown girl of power to enact herself, to paint herself in color on the face of the world? And leave her legacy and a voice. And take her place? Is there room for us?! to take our places. Is there room for me?

We all just want to be! All of us people, young people, black people, global people want to be! To find a way for ourselves to BE! Open a path and a way for us to be! The parting of the red sea! The opening of a global and personal and local skyway.

If you should think of any of the things that have seemed to oppress, disenfranchise, limit, or disable people like/ poverty, or slavery, racism, or prejudice, or fear, disbelief, ignorance, or anything that makes you feel bad in your gut ..

All of those things at their root are assaults upon our human desire to be. just to be. to make ourselves in this world.

All of those things seem to attempt to rob you of your coming. To rob you of your very coming.
How strange is that? If you are born, you are coming! You are coming to be! If you walk and learn to speak and walk, you are learning to be, you are accumulating and aggregating your ball of fire, your ball of light, your bolt of lightning. Your being here.

(what is youth but coming? but is a dream but something coming..? you know?)

This thing that happens, this implication of silence and this unbeingness (notbeingness) kills us. It literally can kill us and our dreams to be. Why do you think Langston Hughes talked about a dream deferred? Why do you think he did it?!
Why do you think he talked about that silence and that pain? It is both a dream, and a person deferred, shot off, postponed!It is your son or your daughter that does not complete themselves. POSTPONED! A dream and a people postponed! Put off! Put off ok!? Put off! Told their time is not now. Told they will be saved for later! Next year. Next life. Next week, tomorrow. Loose ends that are people that are forgotten or Langston says it better in his poem. Can we stop this?! Can we pay attention? Can we catch these falling stars? Can we catch ourselves and look at ourselves?

And sure you may know about it, shoot you prolly even feel it, but we don't talk about it! We just do not talk about that with young people? Not like just do your schoolwork and get to class on time and be alright kid, just be alright.. whatever, but who talks about it? Don't just assume we'll make it. Don't just assume we'll be alright! Don't assume we don't see or understand the past or the present! Don't assume that doesn't pain us! Don't assume that we don't see! That pain that wracks youth and young people and our growing. Particularly! those whose recent people's histories have been wracked with attempts at our unbeingness and in some cases our not even being alive... and you wonder if you will be ok

Who talks about that pain?... and i won't explain it here now..

Who talks about it with us? Who tells us it will be ok? Who confronts it? Who stomps down the monster? Who yells about it? Who stomps it into the ground? Who shakes it up and down? Who throws it against the wall?When we are young people and trying to understand our lives..?

I think it breeds a sense of apathy and depression.. actually.. so many people talk about young people not wanting to do things or not being active.. have people actually thought that maybe some of us might be depressed.. and actually think what they want to do can't happen.

Not just talking about it all the stuff that ails, but envisioning a new way and a way that is full of power.. a way that is really old too.. all of the stories of our people were not just full of pain.. black people were alive and had history before slaveryand native americans had stories before this present now and past attempts at their goneness
none of those things are who we are

but if we don't confront the monster that plagues our dreams and dream up that new old way we will always be running

That's why I'm writing this. I feel it now and too.. that's why I'm writing right now! It affects me! But doing this project helps me ok? Sometimes when I'm writing here is when I feel most vulnerable and need to find courage! I have to muster myself and scream! bloody raw murder! that I'm here or I will be at the brink of losing myself ..

i Actually NEED to do this project. I need to.

\Who heals us? How can we heal ourselves? I think it's wrapped up in dreams.

I'm having a time right now. I'm having a time right now. That is a confession and that is an opening to the world.

Sanity (To Be Continued)

Sanity (To Be Continued)

Know the truth

When you hear it

Know beauty
When you see it

Understand love
When you feel it

And as you dance
Always dance on that floor

Polished by the best

Of you

—Nikki Giovanni

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Note to the ones who knew, who flew

In no way have we forgotten the mission. In every way we are remembering, and we have not forgotten the ones who've helped us in big and little! ways
along the way.

I indeed remember!
spring is here and we'll be taking the boat down to the docks, or
I mean
I mean.. to say
we're coming!

I remember!
And to everyone who I owe pictures, whatnots, and thankyou notes to ,
I remember that too. I remember everyone, like every single person..

yes! most affirmatively!


Friday, April 11, 2008

On the Eve of Martin Luther King's Assassination, A Dream Is Reborn.At the Dream Reborn Conference in Memphis, tn

The Crew! Some of us at least... Aisha, Amenta, Mommie, Sarah from Richmond(video tagged teamed with K.a), Kalimah, Mondy J from Kalamazoo, AND Zakia from Detroit. Had some friends along for the ride this time. Don't we all look so cute? Can you guess who's missing?

Harry Belafonte

                                                                      First Off

Whats a Dream to You?

Right Now!

More on the way...

Thank You to my Mommie, Tri-State Defender, and Green 4 All

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Happy Birthday to the ones

Hanifah and Kalimah turned 21 today!
Cheers and Happy Birthday/s to them!
Over the next nine days the three of us
will be 21 together until I turn 22 on the 19th. Frick!

-i the madness abioto

The Dream Reborn...

Footage upload in progress

Paul Robeson!

Yesterday April 9 was Paul Robeson's birthday.

Here's a link to talk Cornel West gave on him at.. Columbia.
The link should expire.. today if not tomorrow.

Get it quick!
I am hoping that yall can listen to this recording. It is an hour long speech that Cornel West gave on Paul Robeson. I listened to this weeks ago. I think there are some deep and useful thoughts in it. It may also sometimes be difficult listen to, but stay with it and think about it. Listen twice.

-J. Pockrus!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Best quote from Quilombo (1984)

"Unwilling people lose their imagination.
People without imagination are no use at all.
Even in war."


Based on the true story of the "Quilombo dos Palmares" (The Black Nation of Palm Trees), the independent republic that was established in Brazil during the 17th century by Africans who had escaped from slavery.

The Quilombo dos Palmares accommodated more than 20,000 Africans and native Brazilian Indians who had fled from enslavement by the Portuguese and Dutch in the northeastern region of Brazil. Occupying a large area between Pernambuco and Alagoas, Palmares had an organized government system headed by a warrior king.

In Palmares, the escaped Africans strove to maintain their cultural roots and traditions. Their resilience enabled them to resist attacks by the colonial authorities for around one hundred years, from 1590, when the first news of the uprisings came out, to the end of the 1600's, when Palmares was destroyed.

"Quilombo" centers around the two most famous warrior kings of Palmares -Ganga Zumbi and his successor, Zumbi.

Directed by Carlos Diegues

Monday, April 7, 2008

freedom. in stages


that's all

free like a prayer or something
like a song you wanna sing or over and over again when you are little
so that the words smush together
and you are singing gummy syllables that sound good to you
as you ride in the back of the car

free like something like that
free like not remembering what happened yesterday

free like i don't know

free like not really caring if this is a good poem
or a poem at all

free like halfway caring if i want to

free like not looking in the mirror for how i will look

free like something

free like a trope running all over the place

free like a boy

free like a boy
free like a boy

free like a girl
who has doubled herself over wondering if she's free

free like that free

free like throw-up which is really free

free like thinking shoot, i don't want to do that anymore

free like writing a poem you need to write to yourself

free like saying the words

free like stomping your foot in church or in the davison rare books room while looking at rare books

free like looking yourself in the mirror and thinking shoot i'm pretty, even though

free like, thinking

free like writing free like over and over again

free like taking up all the space

free like not looking down when you come in the room and your paper is late

free like hating someone simply because you love them

free like not caring about the academic and whether this or that was a sick sad love poem
that everybody has ever written
that will never be good
because so many people were only trying to let go of something

free like that crafty uncrafty love poem, yeah that love poem
of half spoken syllables and smeared like spit slick lips

which people will always write, and which will always help people

free like that poem, which is of people

free like .. breath

free like fuck!

free like walking

free like sitting with yourself silently after something
happens to you or you have happened something to yourself, and
remembering something good about yourself you need to remember, which you could
if you choose to then, forget

echoing something inside your ribs, as you hold yourself with arms or not,
something ok
just something ok

that's all being free is
today it seems

what is being free tomorrow

Bridging the Americas

What a moment. What a day!
There's a lot to even attempt to explain, which I don't think I will try to do today. But I'm reading several books these days.. just started James Baldwin's "Giovanni's Room" for class. And how that man's writing's pulls from the jump, right off the page.. this man knew something about something.. and shoot he wasn't afraid to tell it. Or if he was I guess he moved pass that.
Such is life. What else is one to do with it? I don't know!
And doing research.. ahh the realms of twisting library stacks and books and meanings and ways.
I'm severely limiting my time on the internet, as it has likely taken over key aspects of my life.. just putting that out there.. and there are too many books and too many people I want to know.. and so much I have to write .. to myself.. and other people.
But I'm watching this movie Quilombo tonight for my Afro-Brazilian dance class/ this research. Reading Bridging the Americas: The Literature of Paule Marshall, Toni Morrison, and Gayl Jones by Stelamaris Coser and some other things, other things. All three of these writers wrote something in connection to the theme of literal flight, as in running away or the myth of the flying African.
So much theory! And so much analysis and so much reaching deep and reaching down! Oh goodness.
You know how you can have a piece of writing, a thick thick piece of writing and then unpacking the symbolisms and the metaphors and the structure and all the social meanings and reaching forwards and back! MAN, LITERARY THEORY!
Such is art!
It has the power to contain our memory and contain our feeling and contain our questings, for who we are! It has that power and you are watching and you are listening and you are knowing something. All within a folktale or a myth or a play or a song.
That's why art and writing and all those things are important. You can say so many things, without saying anything. You can waft it. And the people who know and need to will catch it.
But here I am unpacking all that.. that's what all this is.. unpacking the stories and the instinct and the remembrance.
Like I knew how to dance before anyone taught me how.. there was something I knew.. halfway because I was taught it as a child, but also because it was apart of my culture and part of me.. and that thing has followed me since.. and it's with me now.. and I can perform anywhere and call up that memory.
There was something Habone said when we were in Djibouti, about "the blood recognizing blood." I will go so far as to say that memory recognizes memory. There is something we remember, be it different or the same.. but let me stop going on and into those recesses.

"The conceptions of literature connecting Marshall, Morrison, and Jones to Garcia Marquez and Fuentes hace to do with the recuperation of memory through the tradition of storytelling inherited from mothers and grandmothers. Storytelling is a communal practice that frees history from the constraints of the dominant narrative, creating a future outside the hegemonic social practice. [ p. 16 Coser]
As we reach the end of the twentieth century, writers from both Latin America and minority groups in the United States realize that there is still much to do and change in this world and a whole history to be written, 'An endless task, the cataloging of reality," predicted the Caribbean Frantz Fanon. [ p. 18 Coser]
I guess I'd like to say in wake of this last statement that writing could be anything.. that writing could be dance or filmmaking or banking.. There's a lot, not all I think which has or need to be done with this burden of history..
I think the next time I might like to talk about this idea of the burden of history.. really?.. i mean let's...


Sonnet (1979)

Caught- the bubble
in the spirit-level,
a creature divided;
and the compass needle
wobbling and wavering,
Freed- the broken
thermometer's mercury
running away;
and the rainbow-bird
from the narrow bevel,
of the empty mirror,
flying wherever
it feels like, gay!

-Elizabeth Bishop

Sunday, April 6, 2008

The importance of making a new story

In the previous post I talked about making a new story..
as soon as I finish some critical school work..
we'll talk about the importance of making a new story...

If we do not always know completely why stories work ( though i could go into that too)

we do in many ways know the ways in which they've worked.. and what their effects are.. and what they engender in people..


I should like to say quickly that the making of a new story is close to the making of new worlds/ worlds and realities for people. Like an author writes a book.. like a traveler plots his or her itinerary..

Within this class I'm taking, Americans Abroad: Travel Literature we're sometimes talking about the ways travel literature is like a double form..( and no one's actually said double form.. i just made that up because i'm lacking a better way to describe it).. in that the travel writer is writing what is happening along their journey, but they are simultaneously scripting their journey as they script their writing.. as they script their life.
This is to say that a traveler is in a very hands on way scripting and writing both the story of their journey and the story of their life.
Travel is in a sense a microcosm of life's journey.. travel is in a sense story-making, story-telling.

"we travel in a sense to have more freedom, to script or choreograph our lives"- C. Baraw

What would it mean to script or choreograph our lives?
Is that possible?
What do you think? I mean naturally there are variables of learning.. etc?
but do you really think that people can make a choice about where they are going and what they want? Do you really think so? Does that sound perhaps.. how shall I put it.. bold to say the least? even in some cases disrespectful?
Does that sound dangerously bold? I mean so often it seems like it's easier to think and accept that we're subject to the whims of the nameless fate or better yet, the thoughts and actions of both the named and unnamed masses of other people or someone else, or the vastness of a whirring world.

Shall I even dare to say and think that I, whoever I am, can actually write my own story, write my own world, tell this life as I would like it, and make my own dream?

Do I dare? do I indeed have (as my mother likes to say) the unmitigated gall?

I hope so.
I do dare hope so.

But what could this possibly mean?
for anyone..
and myself?


Saturday, April 5, 2008


The project crushes together old and new forms of human storytelling. a potpourri! of


to test the grounding across these mediums..
and test the power of stories to heal us and make a way.
All these mediums tell a story of what either what once was, what is now, or will be.

The project is not just a docu-narrative film, though we are making one. It's not just a travel narrative or a book of photographs and writing, though we are working on that. It's not just journalism, or dance, though we are dancing and finding stories and all of these methods of seeing and engaging with the world are integral. The Project is a way of looking and engaging with our dreams and stories that hopefully can be used across genres or a life.

It's at it's simplest a hopeful way of looking at our lives and our dreams.Through storytelling of the past, the present, and what may be the future we hope to remember ourselves and inspire ourselves and each other.

There are so many dreams and so many stories and so many visions of the future that beckon to be told. There are so many dreams that beckon to be made real. That need to be made real, for all of us, literally for all of us to live. Where are those dreamers and where are their dreams?

We want to find them, wherever they are. As young people we may or may not have money or say have established ourselves in the world, but we do have our ideas and our dreams.

And if most things begin with a dream, then there's possibility there... some of the most powerful possibility there is it seems.. some of the most self-sustaining possibility. Some of the most powerful possibility.

It seems to me if we can find and focus on this idea of dreams and the power of ourselves, particularly particularly for people whose dreams and stories are not always being told and shared,
for whatever reason,
whose stories and dreams are missing in the global panorama of dreams and stories told!
and further further my friends, dreams and stories realized! (There's a correlation there.)
If we can actively bring up our stories, make a way, and an opening for those dreams and stories to be spoken and shared and told. If we can carry those stories to the foreground,
if we can in this small big way... do that.

Then we can do something great.

We can make a new story.

I think we can do something great!
Then we can welcome something great!
I think we can really do something great!
I pretty much feel it and it excites me immensely!

And that'd just be the spark..

Core values and process 3: The thing about Stories

[ This post is in stages. Check the previous ones for beginning. It elucidates "what" the project is and will be concentrated later]

The project has specific aim:

If we are thinking about the power of stories, myths, and dreams of the dreamer, if we are thinking about all the books we have ever read, all the stories we have ever been told, all the news articles we've ever been intrigued by, and how they've affected us at different times and in different ways
then we can question and ask ourselves.. perhaps..

How does a story work?
Does anyone know?
Why does a story work?
How does a story effect us?
When someone told us a story when we were children or after as we grew how did it and
why did it make us feel a certain way? Did it help us grow? I think they did.
How do stories effect us now?

There are so many answers to this one question of a story and why they do things to us, how they help us.

It seems we all perhaps believe in stories.. even if we don't know we do.
We all listen when someone speaks to us...maybe.
Some of us like to watch the news. Some of us don't.
Some of us listen to song lyrics and remember them.
Some of us like to make song lyrics.
It seems we all like a good story.

Why do stories have power? why do books have power? why do images which tell stories too have power? It seems like stories could be one of those things not to even believe in...
I mean they're kind of ephemeral...And sometimes people don't like to believe in things that are ephemeral, that seem not quite so real.. you know? It's true. Sometimes it's easier to accept what's right before you as the ultimate state of things.

:And if I can add quickly sometimes there's a social stigma attached to believing in impossible things, or things that seem too "out there". Sometimes we don't want to believe in impossible things, because it takes courage and more than a little bit of leaving what seems like security.

But there's something unusual about stories. People accept them and often times allow them into their worlds, to change their worlds and their perceptions of their worlds.

While sometimes it takes a great stretch of imagination to think that one could believe in so-called impossibilities, somehow people will generally listen to a good story.

From where do stories derive their power? It seems to me a great many people these days are realizing the power of stories to support people, their lives, and if i shall go so far to say and i shall, change the world. The Memphis Public Library has just or is perhaps still in the midst of a program to get Memphians to "tell their stories." Story Corps, an independent non-profit whose mission is to "honor and celebrate one another’s lives through listening." has been traveling around the country since 2003 and has interviewed tens of thousands of people and has partnered with NPR and the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.

What is it about stories? They aren't necessarily food and they aren't shelter, but they do things to us. Don't they?

They feed our lives.

core values and process, 2

We are operating under a core set of questions and hypotheses that we believe will help us complete this "project'.

We are utilizing a design or pattern which takes form in the myth of the flying africans.. as it is known in The Pepole could Fly by Virginia Hamilton, Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison, Drums and Shadows, and other documented and undocumented sources of this folktale.

The bones, the skeleton, the framework, the design, or pattern is this folktale and myth.
This folktale is source material for divergence. We are conducting a close reading of a hypothesis and a story that people can fly.

  • Our hypothesis is that people can fly or realize a planned vision of themselves, a dream, or a life if...
  • The "project" is an exercise of this power to fly, a public exercise of this ability. It is also a shared exercise of this ability. The "project" welcomes anyone to test this experiment with us and to do this "project" with us wherever you are and wherever you will be.
We trust that a dreamer can and will find their way through belief in both dream and the power of the dreamer. We trust that this power is of absolutely everyone, with absolutely no exception.

We know that a dream will not be the same for every person. That we have all have different dreams. We trust there is enough room for everyone and there is no competition in the traditional sense of the word.

We believe that a folktale like "The People Could Fly is important because it realizes power in people and peoples who for some reason or another be it race, history, ancestry, geographic location, or socioeconomic variables have both been told and over time told themselves they cannot fly.

Myths of this nature help transcends of disbelief even for people who's even present reality appears to tell them that in all ways and all means they cannot fly and
that she or he will not be able to do so, that both they and their dreams are not strong enough, important enough, or worthy enough to stand with the world. Myths and folktales of this nature, through their wonder and power jumps that thought that denies us. It refutes it and in many ways does not even recognize it's power.

Folktales and human myths like this help heal the disbelief in how powerful we all just are.
Human tales like this heal the divide between the impossible and the possible.

They shift slavery into freedom,
turn numbing defeat into an awakening triumph
illusions ofsolitude into community
They shift sadness and depression into self-agency and action,
our nightmares into day dreams, and
feelings of competition and lack into room for all

Laced within the text is hope, faith, belief, agency, action, future, belief.
Some stories, some myths heal widespread and deep sorrows.
The myth of the flying africans and The People Could Fly is one such story.


Friday, April 4, 2008

Every Little Thing She does is magic...

The young woman lifted one foot on the air. Then the other. She flew clumsily at first, with the child now held tightly in her arms. Then she felt the magic, the African mystery..

Sarah flew over the fences. She flew over the woods. Tall trees could not snag her. Nor could the overseer. She flew like an eagle now, until she was gone from sight.

Virginia Hamilton, The People Could Fly

I just came back from a dance showing and just spoke to Kalimah who is at the Dream Reborn Conference.

What I want to say is.
We are looking for the magic words. We are looking for the golden words.
I asked the people at the dance workshop, how one describes a concept, or a project, or a dream one has to those who need to understand..
because that is where we are. Every moment counts now and we need the magic words.. to say.. and describe.. we need to translate this language.. we have.
This is for everyone who's ever asked me what the "project" is..

The project is a project first.
Project as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary.

1. a. A plan, draft, scheme..; a design or pattern according to which something is made. Obs.
b. A mental conception, idea, or notion; speculation.
2. a. A planned or proposed undertaking; a scheme, a proposal; a purpose, an objective.b. Educ. An exercise in which school or college students study a topic, either independently or in collaboration, over an extended period; a piece of research work undertaken by a student or group of students.c. In business, science, etc.: a collaborative enterprise, freq. involving research or design, that is carefully planned to achieve a particular aim.
{dag}3. Something projected or thrown out; a projection, an emanation (of some being or thing).
{dag}4. The fact of being thrown out or put forth. Obs. rare.
{dag}5. Something thrown; a projectile, a missile. Obs.

We are a project with have a specific aims.
We have a mental conception, idea, and a notion. We have a planned and proposed undertaking. It is an exercise and an experiment which involves research and design. It is a collaborative enterprise and undertaking.
The mission of this project as we now know it to be involves both questions and answers.
One of the choreographers said when trying to translate their language they describe their
"core values and their process." S o Let me try this.
Core values

The project trusts in the potential and power of dreams. (That still sounds flat.. editing this statement)

We believe in this because we foremost believe in and see the beauty and power of the dreamers...

We trust a dream is important, even before it has been told, seen, shared implemented, or even explained fully. .We know that a dream needs the most watering before it has ever even been seen, which is often when most people question it.., including but not limited to the dreamer herself.

We trust that a dreamer has a dream for a reason, not always one in which we always immediately understand, even if that reason is just to "do it".

We know a dream is both a verb and a noun,
it is an action (a choice) and a thing. A thing becoming.

We think that dreams are often more real than reality.
They often tell the deeper truths about ourselves.

We find strength in the idea that
when it appears we have nothing,
you will still have dreams.

We find strength in that anyone can and will have a dream.We find strength in that.. people who
appear to have absolutely nothing will have a dream.
We find strength in that people who appear to have everything still have a dream.

We find strength in the very fact that a dream is not physical,
That which is often taken as a dream's weakness is it's greatest strength.
Since it is not, it can become anything,
change anything, make anything,

We find momentum in an idea
that most things began as dreams. Most of what we see around us,
was once someone's dream. Someone chose to make it.

Thus this is important, to the act of dreaming, the choice to have a dream.

This is important for people who appear to have nothing and those who appear to have everything.

We believe in the dream, because foremost, first, and beginning we have an intense belief
in the people.

How do we translate that?
We trust in a dream's becoming we trust in a person's becoming..
we trust in a dream's becoming as we trust in our own becomings.

I welcome pointers... this will be edited.. to get at a core and i still have yet to elaborate process.. though I know it and we've been doing it.. some people don't


free write slick lip quick wit

ahhhh.. let's describe this.. let's scribe this.. let's give a quick cursory glance.. there's So MUCH!
aND so Much EdITING OF thought for ConsUMPTION. So much explaining about WHAT we're doing... and What Exactly it is.. and how its exactly gonna happen.

SO much. And you can't do too much editing sometimes. sometimes you just gotta do it.

sometimes you just wanna take something inside you and bear it out to the world
bear it out. like a cake, just like a whole solid feeling. a whole solid feeling that yells, and hums, and whispers, that bears the deep resonances of like.. your grandfathers voices.. or like
just deep ok.. just deep rumblings of the earth

but that rumbling is inside you.. rocks and magma gurgling.

But I diverge! I always diverge.


Folktales, myths, stories embodied and spreading its own quilt over the earth
We are myth makers, myth takers
We are those people who do impossible things

We are young. We are old.

We are a living theatre, a living spectacle, a living word, a spoken voice speaking itself into existence..

We are transformative word. We are being and it is. We are words into existence.
We are our thoughts and dreams into existence.

We are your dream at night time, that ghost of a thought that tingles you.
We are our mercurial connections between ourselves, between crosswise harchwise, between me and you.

Why do we forget our dreams? Why and when do we not believe in them.
Our thought is that out of everything and many things, all things begin with the whisp of a dream that anchors itself into existence.. it anchors itself, it catches itself on and takes hold. And it will not let go.
We bear these things into the world. We bear ourselves.

On a basic level. We want to reach that place in ourselves. We are operating on the assumption that

  • Our innermost and outermost dreams and desires are an immense source of power
  • those visions, those stories, those dreams must be honored, spoken, shared, given legitimacy by the dreamer foremost. That a vision must be set rolling. That it is not small, that it is not nothing, that it is indeed one of the most profound and powerful things we have. You can take something that appears to be nothing and have no place and no name in the world, you can take that sparks that lights, that twinkle ferociously in your being, in your gut, in your dream, in that place where no one is but you.. you can take that thing and it can become a real thing, because it always was..
  • that these dreams. these visions. these inclinations.. this knowing or want or wish you have without knowing the knowing WHY. These things must be TOLD, AS YOU TELL A STORY. They must be SHARED as you share anything. They must be LINKED... as people must be linked.. .. they must be RECOGNIZED. One that you are not crazy for having some wish or desire.. you must recognize it yourself and that takes a certain strength.. because people will not always see or understand your vision.. to make a thing happen you have to know it's going to happen. And I'm really speaking fromwhat I'm learning and experiencing NOW and over the past year. You have to be the constant fixture... your lighthouse.. your compass it what may seem like a little darkness. THEN everything can fall into it's place
  • Speaking something. Sharing something gives it power. And on a base level what we need is in us.. and for young people, or people who are searching for a way to something, or people, or people of color who are seeking to identify themselves and their lives with the world itself. who are seeking to Write their stories and their Lives and themselves and their varying and multi-farious beauties into existence.. who are wishing to weave themselves a world and a place and a power which has always been theirs.. for them, and us and all of us.. this speaking, this sharing, this Knowing is so important. It says that..we are powerful and it refutes that we are not.. and this idea that pervades that we are marked for something.. and that all of our lives we will be struggling against the past or shall I say racism, or the burden of being black and trying, trying so fitfully, to be something, that we shall always always be facing an uphill climb, that the world itself! that the whole world itself! is not made for us. This kind of idea that brings so many lost dreams. So many dreams deferred. So many who were born into this world to do sommething spectacular, but who get lost by the wayside. Stars brought into being that flicker that do not complete their shining missions. But I guess I don't need to explain it. So many know that feeling intimately, as have I at moments. But this isn't about that. This isn;t about that. I refute that in that I welcome a new way, an old way, a way that is composed of me, and all the people who have ever loved me. All the people who have ever made way for me.. all the people who came before me and shall come after. Like when I think of my grandparent's which always gives me strength.. that other thought that I am not much, that I am struggling, that I'm not worthy, or that I can't BE strong in the world falls away from me. WHen I think about how great they were.. then I forget that other thought.. it becomes fuzzy or something. I think that I am not alone.. that I am as they used to say in Greenville, Mr. Turner's "grandbaby". It becomes real for me. ANd I am not alone. And I cannot forget, you see I can never forget.
  • It's a feeling. Maybe you feel it.

Update: The Dream Reborn THIS weekend in Memphis

The People Could Fly Project interviewed Van Jones of Green For All and The Ella Baker Center in Oakland, CA earlier this week for the Memphis Tri-State Defender.
The People Could Fly: The Dream Reborn

The PCFP will be in Memphis this weekend for the Dream Reborn Conference hosted by Green For All. Kalimah and Seyra drove down to Memphis from school at Hollins University to Memphis. Several people from around the county are staying at our house there this weekend. Hanifah picked up someone named Zakiyah from the airport yesterday (I have yet to hear further details. I'm still at Wesleyan.) My father, Ekpe Abioto will be performing at the April 4th Foundations Banquet tonight where Harry Belafonte, Dr. Joseph Lowery, and Congressman Lewis will be speaking. The PCFP will be tabling at the conference and filming and roaming and interviewing throughout.

Basically this is just to say.. check this IDEA! out. If you can or cannot be there, get knowledgeable! It's all of our responsibility to take care of the earth in the ways that it takes care of us. I mean take a minute to look around you at the ground, the earth, the sky, to feel what's around you. There's something major just beneath your feet. Not just some thing you're walking on to get to class on time or wherever you're going. This life is a reciprocal relationship. Let's live deeper.

And check out this green movement.
Here are some resources.
Sustainable South Bronx ( Majora Carter, Wesleyan University Alum)
Green For All
Urban Science Adventures

Great speakers are scheduled like

So yeah.. continue.. continue.. continue!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

i don't have anything to say tonight. that happens too.

"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable man
persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress
depends upon the unreasonable man.
-George Bernard Shaw
What do we think about this?

I was having quite a time earlier this week with balancing this project and it's arms with schoolwork. So then I just couldn't do anything and was kind of languishing in spite of myself. And then I was talking to my mother. And she basically said, "You can't see this in black and white, as two dichotomies.. as schoolwork and the project. You've never seen things in black and white and when you do you break down. They can't be two separate things. You have to infuse it with that which you love. Take away the black and white and immerse it in color."

And that's generally the same thing Charles Baraw, one of my professors told me earlier this week. Check our class blog.. yeah that 's right class blog. We are currently reading Henry James' Portrait of a Lady.
Americans Abroad Class

First Artist Spotlight!

K I D   A : Songstress. Filmmaker/ Producer. Dreams of Spanish Soccer?

 Ann Thweatt aka Kid A. I just saw one of her films this evening themed, as if the fates would have it, Dreams and Nightmares.  If you can believe it or not she just started her solo music making career last March. To say the least she's focused. Click below to see whatelse she's about.
Also check out her myspace profile and mtvU profile to listen to more music.

Kyja's Room- A photopoem in 3 parts

EDIT via Ms. Kyja herself. Quote attributed to James Baldwin
not Richard Wright.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Hotlanta at the Dream Reborn

This is a video a Morehouse student made in support of the Dream Reborn this weekend 4-6 in Memphis, TN

There are some things going on.
There are some things going on.
Quiet as it is kept right now...things are going on

Lesley-Ann Brown, Black Girl on Mars

I'm a fan of BlackGirlOnMars, Lesley-Ann Brown.
She continually has .. just on point things to say... that seem to come from an important place.. a place of memory. She seems to really have an appreciation for history, personal histories, and the way they continue to define and in many ways support us as individuals. I guess I don't need to tell it. The following is an excerpt of her latest post. I love these quotes and if someone else's words of words can speak of a part of your journey, then this'll be so.You should just go there.
Black Girl on Mars
for Kai

“We need to dig and jump into the land we come from; one woman after another, one dream upon the other, calling up who we are.”
—Ntozake Shange

“As a woman I want no country. As a woman my country is the whole world.”
—Mary Daly, Pure Lust

For a girl to be born in the shadow of her foremothers is no small thing
for their lives are stories...

A Seed's A Star, Stevie Wonder

A Seed's A Star / Tree Medley" from The Secret Life of Plants

We're a people black as is your night
Born to spread Amma's eternal light
Which since time began
Has been to bring truth to every man

Our ancestors have since long ago
Passed their wisdom down so we to know
For here lies the key
That will help unfold the mistery

A seed's a star
A seed's a star's a seed
A star's a seed
A star's a seed's a star

In myself I do contain
The elements of sun and rain
First a seed with roots that swell
I gradually burst through my shell
Pushing down into the ground
The root of me is homeward bound
A trunk, a leaf and there I am
A miracle of least by far

Tree - you are the longest living one we know
the largest of all plants and still you grow

Tree - within your branches there's such history
so much of what we're searching for to know

Every fifty years we celebrate
Po Tolo, our star, as it rotates
Though infinitely small
It is still the heaviest of them all

A seed's a star
A seed's a star's a seed
A star's a seed
A star's a seed's a star
A seed's a star
A seed's a star's a seed
A star's a seed
A star's a seed's a star

Ye Lolo De Ye
Lolo Ye Kesse De Ye
Kesse ye lolo De Ye
Lolo Ye Kesse De Ye
Kesse ye lolo De Ye
Lolo Ye Kesse De Ye
Kesse ye lolo De Ye
Lolo Ye Kesse De Ye

And some believe antennas are their leaves
That spans beyond our galaxy
They've been, they are and probably will be
Who are the mediocrity