The bookstore in my town has a racism section in honor of Ferguson and it gives me a lot of hope
I think we make the mistake of thinking calm isn’t as interesting as chaos, or that wild things are the most exciting. It’s easy to neglect what’s quiet. We’re drawn to disasters and damage. We go there and then we leave, and then we’re done. But there’s a lot of complexity in what comes after the noise, what’s between it, and what’s not said, plus the real work. The national noise of Ferguson has died down. I hope we’re still curious enough.
Whenever I’d watch him on talk shows, standup, many things, what always struck me…and everyone else…about Robin Williams, was how fast he spoke. how quickly he flowed from one idea to the next without breaths, a waterfall of thoughts and punchlines, verbal eruptions of energy…signs of a thinker. daring you to follow. That manic. It would often leave me dizzy and amAzed. It was sometimes troubling. I could barely keep up, but somewhere in there I laughed.
We read and We cry. A deep sense of empathy keeps us at a safe distance from cases like Mike Brown’s, even as We maintain a proximity, anxiously, through friends, partners and little and big brothers who look like him. It’s a necessity and a burden and completely selfish but We never know how to process or how to not feel like We don’t want to know more, because We know enough. And doing a thing never seems like enough. We all try to say something to prove We feel it. Those articulate enough to express intelligent rage are our heroes. We say nothing to leave room to make sense of it. And it all just seems like a stupid cycle and whoever, whatever is pedaling should please stop pedaling.
Nikki Giovanni in dialogue with James Baldwin, 1973 (via jalylah)