ed. xi vol. i
black history month is here which means mcdonald's & coca cola are playin their most "urban" commercials (as if they don't market to black folks enough) and black folks are continuing to shine. from the obama portraits to my twist out to black panther to quincy spilling all the tea to reaching true homebody status and not leaving my house for 4 days. to janet jackson appreciation day to aasia lashay bullock dropping the no babies video. black folks are showing out. still. again. and i am here for it. for me, february is a benchmark. a time that i love to perform new work that explores or attempts to make sense of new or different parts of myself. this year i feel stretched in new and old, scary ways. i am trying to remind myself. thru tears. that i know fear all too well and that my wants and needs lay beyond fear. keep pushing, sis...
like all editions of the brown pages. i hope you enjoy 'em.
tho' it has been over a year since i began this journey. committing myself to understanding and embodying as fully as possible the life and work of Audre Lorde, it still feels like i have only began. to change takes an immense amount of dedication. effort.i have been striving towards transformation. towards living...differently. attempting to place into practice the essence of "Uses of the Erotic" and "Poetry is not a Luxury". i believe to my core in the words that she spoke, wrote, and lived.
there are many silences within me. pain that fear keeps me from unearthing. (my) truths that i fear will hurt or anger. upset. others.
the act of caring for myself takes more effort than i thought. more awareness more listening. more speaking up. it is much easier (for me) to hide. to fold my body into a ball. to shallow words. to place myself last. that comes easy.
to care for myself means to also love myself. to apply the same compassion i would to others to ME. this isn’t a profound notion but to place into practice feels profound.
the actual act of loving ourselves, unconditionally isn't as easy as simply quoting rupaul and running a bath. at least not for me.
it is speaking to myself as if i am speaking to a sister. and listening to myself the same.
it is carving time into stillness. closed eyes and settled breathe. traveling through skin to fight holy wars.
“what are the words you do not yet have?”
thank you audre lorde for leaving behind a blueprint for me to follow. a life and work that reflects such deep strength, courage, truth, dedication, love, light, and connection. i am grateful for your "burst of light" that leads me through immense darkness towards healing and growth.
Thank the Lorde!
The People’s Church held their first worship services on February 17 & 18 as apart of Steppenwolf's Lookout Series.
Entitled Thank the Lorde!I these services aimed to
further and protect the development of an eroticism rooted in the spiritual practices and legacies of Black women and gender non-conforming femmes.
These services are one of many spaces where we praise, study and Thank the Lorde! Only this time, the object of worship is a Black lesbian feminist doing her work? Have you done yours?
Meet the Church
Felicia Holman | Usher Board
Lifelong Chicagoan Felicia Holman is Co-Founder/Communication Director of Honey Pot Performance, Marketing/Studio Manager at Links Hall and curator of the 4th annual Chicago Curates Columbia student exhibition, Engage/Connect.
With Honey Pot, Felicia creates and presents original interdisciplinary performance which engages audience and inspires community. Credits include The Ladies Ring Shout (2011), Price Point (2013), Juke Cry Hand Clap (2014) and current work-in-progress, Masking Her (2015-2016) which debuted at Pritzker Pavilion as part of the 2nd annual REVIVAL residency & showcase, presented by DCASE (Jan. 2015).
In addition to performing, Felicia writes essays & content for online outlets including Sixty Inches From Center Magazine, The Working House Blog and This Is HCL (the High Concept Laboratories blog). She is also chief editor of monthly e-newsletter, HPP News and is an admitted Facebook junkie. This April with Honey Pot, Felicia began a five-month 'Crossing Boundaries' residency at the Arts Incubator in Washington Park. Felicia sums up her dynamic artrepreneurial life in 3 words---"Creator, Connector, Conduit."
is one of those songs that if you grew up in the church you hear it and immediately memories wash over you. I've used it in past work, dynamite and will be using it again in Thank the Lorde! It is a song that for me currently is important for me to create new memories and stories using. Remembering what was, while creating what could be or even what is.
performing to precious lord (an excerpt) of dynamite at drag dsm. hover mouse over image for more insight
i felt called to create Thank the Lorde! out of a deep want to be in a space that edified and worshiped some of my black heroes. i wanted to create a space that re-imagined the traditions i grew up with. traditions embedded within a belief system that no longer reflects my moral grounds. because i want the word church to resonate in my body in a new way. i want to heal from my history. i want to be able to hear Precious Lord(e) and think not just of my grandfather sitting in his rocking chair but also of Audre Lorde. why can't i ask her to take my hand? to lead me on, to help me stand? she is my shepherd. after all, she walked through the valley of death's shadow, unafraid.
this cast of folks who have agreed to reflect and create on the life and work of audre lorde with me is a dream. i am among the finest of creators who are to me are a reflection of the ideals that lorde spoke on. there is no stage. there is no script. there is just this group of folks coming together to praise and thank our black. mother. warrior. lesbian. poet. audre lorde.