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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Couldn't Have Said It Better Myself....

I was sent this by a couple of people (thanks tambay and sergio), and I'm sure you will read it elsewhere, too. But it is so wonderful, I just had too post it. Beauty incarnate.

Lest We Forget: An open letter to my sisters who are brave.

Alice Walker on Obama

I HAVE COME home from a long stay in Mexico to find – because of the presidential campaign, and especially because of the Obama/Clinton race for the Democratic nomination - a new country existing alongside the old. On any given day we, collectively, become the Goddess of the Three Directions and can look back into the past, look at ourselves just where we are, and take a glance, as well, into the future. It is a space with which I am familiar.

When I was born in 1944 my parents lived on a middle Georgia plantation that was owned by a white distant relative, Miss May Montgomery. (During my childhood it was necessary to address all white girls as "Miss" when they reached the age of twelve.) She would never admit to this relationship, of course, except to mock it. Told by my parents that several of their children would not eat chicken skin she responded that of course they would not. No Montgomerys would.

My parents and older siblings did everything imaginable for Miss May. They planted and raised her cotton and corn, fed and killed and processed her cattle and hogs, painted her house, patched her roof, ran her dairy, and, among countless other duties and responsibilities my father was her chauffeur, taking her anywhere she wanted to go at any hour of the day or night. She lived in a large white house with green shutters and a green, luxuriant lawn: not quite as large as Tara of Gone With the Wind fame, but in the same style.

We lived in a shack without electricity or running water, under a rusty tin roof that let in wind and rain. Miss May went to school as a girl. The school my parents and their neighbors built for us was burned to the ground by local racists who wanted to keep ignorant their competitors in tenant farming. During the Depression, desperate to feed his hardworking family, my father asked for a raise from ten dollars a month to twelve. Miss May responded that she would not pay that amount to a white man and she certainly wouldn't pay it to a nigger. That before she'd pay a nigger that much money she'd milk the dairy cows herself.

Read the rest of the article here:


MsMarvalus said...

Oh, how I wish I could put words to paper like Alice Walker!

I don't necessarily agree with all she has said, but she says it so poetically, so beautifully, that you almost feel like singing it out loud...and memorizing it...

Thanks for the link...

aj said...

That was a wonderful read. She is on top of it - as usual.

Invisible Woman said...

thanks ms. m and aj; I knew 2 intelligent women like you would read it. It was the most unusual way I've heard anyone speak about Obama so far, and the most interesting.

Danielle said...

When Alice is on top of her game, no one says it better. Much love and respect to her for her continued bravery and willingness to speak her truth.

Invisible Woman said...

I LOVE when folks are real.

The Fitness Diva said...

That mentality remains pretty much the same, even today, on both sides of the coin. Not for all, but for far too many still. And those thinking that way still think that it's THE way.
It's not, and I'm glad someone's coming to try to open some minds.

Good post.

Invisible Woman said...

Thanks, tfd. I am so glad Alice Walker said this, cause she has folks of all color paying attention to what she says.