Black Love Matters: A 2020 MJB requiem for my mother (who is alive), her mother and their mothers, sisters, aunts and girlfriends…
Mary J Blige has supplied a generation, my generation, of Black women with a soundtrack for our love. I am grateful…somehow she found all of the emotion and the magic to put my heart issues in front of a beat and find the steps to dance it out and the pace to walk it out. Mary J is like that classmate in the school who leads the way and sets the direction of the crowd…thank you Ms. Blige.
#1 Self-love in our community is about peace and happiness. It is not necessarily drama free, actually, we expect it…drama that is. Living life can be addictive…people, places and things…but freedom is a choice. We accept it. In the same way that we fall in love outside of ourselves, we know when to walk away from destructive desires, understanding that we don’t have to self-deprecate in order to obtain love or happiness. We understand the cost of loving ourselves may be high but it is always worth it.
#2 Love(r)s that are “ride or dies” help build future…a higher life. Passing time and barriers like a cycle club, love like this is its own safety. The mountain that is love, is easily taken in and taken on…love like this is all we need to get by.
#3 Family love is a whole level of kinship: fictive or legally functional, Black families are complex yet simple. We choose to share and therefore love with and on purpose…to see each other…to judge it…sometimes harshly but always with an eye to see our own selves reflected in what is before us.
#4 Black Community love is not always about the party…it is usually and typically contemplative and reflective. It is the constant dissonance…wondering…how? Why? Where can we find peace, joy, love? We are struggle…Black community is a motley crew of sounds, flavors, colors. Look at our life. “It is hard, but WE will get far”…the peace of mind that comes from going beyond self…that is that Black Community Love that allows us to extend grace in the face of pain. Built on our faith practices, how we see the divine from high and low places, Black Community love unites among difference.
#5 The Black Love Matters vortex…the swirling…the spinning…the shifts in life that cause slow ebbs and flows with the same productive force as tumult and explosion, is real. Black Love matters. Black Lives matter.
Seeing the next Vice President of the United States Kamala Harris, a multicultural/multiethnic Black woman, stroll onto stage with #WorkThat as her soundtrack feels like an anthem that honors who we are and have been…forever.