Verbs & Visions








Some Fixing





“Doll comes from the word idol. Until recent times the doll was never considered to be a toy.”
sculptor John Outterbridge
“Storytelling is the first medicine.”
filmmaker Haile Gerima
“We are the space between god and the ancestors. Fill it up.” 
                                                                            poet Ise Lyfe
“The promise I made my pen: never to leave it lying
  in someone else’s blood.”
 author Audre Lorde

 I’m wondering, what happened to that $400 million?"
                                                        singer/composer Oscar Brown, Jr.
"Lincoln estimated the aggregate value of the emancipated slaves in 1863 was $400 million dollars.

  Dr. Albert Schweitzer Winner, Nobel Prize for Peace
"How have Whites of all nations acted towards the natives since the discovery of new lands? What is the significance of the mere fact that so many peoples have already disappeared from places reached by Europeans flaunting the name of Jesus?
Who can ever assess the ills wrought by the spirits and diseases we have brought them? We are heavily in debt . . . And when we have done all in our power, we shall have made reparation for only a small part of the sins committed.”
(Name of actual slave ship)

          1. Waiting

You.          floating
above the crackle of bones
stepping in dry water
singing your question
       How do I heal from the
       indelible wound ?
Aaaah. We wondered
when you would ask.

           2. Freeing

You have grieved now for 400 years!
Generations memorizing the failed self
drugged by your technology
tenderness left impotent
dancing in shackles you call handcuffs
Why do you dance our death
instead of our life?
Step into the water, child
let the shackles slip from your soul.

           3. Rememoring

From the first ship to
the last whip
was for this moment.
Our bodies were taken
to render us unconscious
our cells filled with fear
and yes, we slept
through our beliefs
but now you hold the seed.
You remember.
You know our full nature
not just the pain
walk that memory
You submitted to the collective way
walk that memory
Your law was the sacredness of life
recall that sustenance
walk that memory
water this seed.

           4. Water

The water connects you
blending memory
and tomorrow.
Womb water.
It is your awakening now
that we are waiting for.
Your awakening.

c. 2004 S. Pearl Sharp

“Slavery is never abolished. Slavery is transformed. Only the slaves can free the slaves.”
historian John Henrik Clarke
“The way out is back through.”
Rev. Dr. Johnny Ray Youngblood
“Spelling. Each time you speak you’re casting a spell.”
                                     artist Ra6.