Snippet

My Main character is a naughty creature. So is Deepon. But there are things out there Naughtier. Badder. More powerful. More resourceful. Here, they are being reminded of that.

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Something tickled along my ivories. In a spectacularly bad way.

Then I realized what it was. It was the old woman’s singing.

I didn’t know quite what she was, but with the inflections of her humming, she was weaving. Weaving music magic.

Something about the way the old woman spinned her notes gave rise to the notion in my mind of someone walking over my grave.

I knew Deepon felt it too. It was all over her face.

Then her singing, humming, weaving, suddenly stopped. Her head snapped right round, and she stared at us. And we both knew. She was not there by accident. She was there for us. Like previous others who’d made their presence known, she was there to send us a message. We both knew what it was, and it’d been driven home harder than a nail under a hammer.

The old woman stared at us for a long while.

Deepon and I headed home.

 

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Quoth

 “Forget what it sounds like for a minute, let’s consider the spirit of rock and roll: Rebellious. Energetic. Vocal. Independent. Driven. Unapologetic. Powerful. They’re characteristics I could attribute to damn-near every sister I know.

In fact, my personal Who’s Who of Rock and Roll is stacked with bomb Black women. Betty Davis. Grace Jones. Tina Turner. Aretha Franklin. Nona Hendryx. Poly Styrene. Joan Armatrading. Joyce Kennedy… and that’s just 1976-77.

So why do so many people go out of their way to marginalize or flat-out disregard Black women as both pioneers and torchbearers of rock? Why are we so indifferent to the fact that more than a few African-American women strapped an instrument to their back and helped carry the genre from the fields to the church to the juke joint to the charts to a multimillion-dollar industry?

Probably because someone told us it wasn’t ours and we chose to believe it. They said it was devil’s music, so we cast it out. We let it go because someone gave it white skin, a penis, and the green light to cross boundaries that Black people couldn’t. And in so doing, they convinced the world that our pioneers didn’t deserve equal recognition, equal exposure or equal ownership.

Damn shame.”

— Black Women In Rock: If Sister Rosetta Tharpe is too old school for you, then maybe Santigold flips your wig. Either way, sisters have been part of rock music for as long as guitar feedback’s been loud (via blackrockandrollmusic)

Quoth

“You think dark is just one colour but it ain’t. There’re five or six kinds of black. Some silky, some woolly. Some just empty. Some like fingers. And it don’t stay still. It moves and changes from one kind of black to another. Saying something is pitch black is like saying something is green. What kind of green? Green like my bottles? Green like a grasshopper? Green like a cucumber, lettuce, or green like the sky is just before it breaks loose to storm? Well, night black is the same way. May as well be a rainbow.” –Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon

Quoth

Via Afrofuturist Affair:-

You guys know about vampires? … You know, vampires have no reflections in a mirror? There’s this idea that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror. And what I’ve always thought isn’t that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror. It’s that if you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves. And growing up, I felt like a monster in some ways. I didn’t see myself reflected at all. I was like, “Yo, is something wrong with me? That the whole society seems to think that people like me don’t exist?” And part of what inspired me, was this deep desire that before I died, I would make a couple of mirrors. That I would make some mirrors so that kids like me might see themselves reflected back and might not feel so monstrous for it.

Junot Díaz

 

Some impressions on Only Lovers Left Alive

To be honest, I went for the Hiddles (shutup, shaddap, SHADDAP!) and have been fascinated with Tilda Swinton ever since she landed on top of Keanu Reeves and proceeded to steal scenes from him in Constantine (along with Peter Stormare, who clearly had a whale of a time as Lucifer), but I ended up cutting the film apart in my mind as if I were sitting at my computer at home, going through submitted stories in the slush pile.

“Knock it off, and enjoy the film!” I told myself often. To like, no avail.

It’s not a bad film. I just–even with two shots of Irish cream in me–couldn’t shut that part of my brain off.

I also didn’t expect to be so sharply reminded of my own place when we were shown Adam’s (hi boys!) and to be reminded that yes, I am an artist, and that my place is an artist’s cliche. Yes, I have a 25+ year-old guitar hanging about; just replace the other musical items with papers, magazines and books.

Only Lovers Left Alive leaves its stuff for the end. That’s about as much as I would say without risking spoiling it. Which I was hoping it was going to do, because I appreciated all the atmosphere, the characterization, the costuming- the hair even works quite well. I’d have done even more with the hair, but that’s not my film, is it?

Had Only Lovers Left Alive not delivered on some sort of action but kept leaning on its unique quirks, it would not have worked. It so reminded me of those pieces that have people up in arms, literary versus non, words for the sake of words versus something with something actually happening. (I might be revealing the tendencies of the sort of things Abyss and Apex publishes, I think…)

The art-house, foreign film sort would love this film.  I’m kind of that sort. The vamps do not sparkle or have some similar lame worldbuilding excuse.

Yay.

On the way home, I wrote in the blank spaces of a book I carried along to occupy my time. I should know better than to go out without a pen and paper or something by now.

So… yeah, that’s my two cents.