BLACK AND MOONLIGHTRBM
Carnegie Hall clip
What .... am i thinking right now?
Right now, i'm thinking my links on this planet are red and black.
i was born in Ayiti.
There, flesh and spirituality are as black as my dreamless sleep.
As black as the firmament from which creation sprung. The color of carbon,
the key atom found in all living matter.
My brain, breath, belly, breast,
they carry particles of a culture where every vibratory energy comes
out of the dark melanin seed that Haiti / and Africa / owns,
which captures light, reproduces itself into various hues and shades,
full of multidimensional patterns, disparate, scattered energies, eternal
But, the drumming, tom tom creating Haiti's life beat is also vigorously,
violently, overwhelmingly red.
As the kerchief worn by Toussaint Louverture.
as the crimson Haitian sun, as the Deep's libations, lava hot.
it goes way back.
in declaring Haiti's independence, the African warrior, General
Jean-Jacques Dessaline took the tri-colored French flag, ripped out
the white and threw it into the sea, blew the deep blue into the Black appellation that's never wavered for Vertierres warriors. Leaving our 1804 flag, Black and the red.
The first red.
Dessaline had reconstructed the very soul of the Sun.
Tearing a fork deep inside a flying clothe's (not one, not two,
but) 300-year gravitational pull.
He'd arched the sky spirit back into mother earth again.
igniting Alkebulan's liquid fires. Raising the first flame - Petwo's
And when that pineal ruby drummed forth the reds that's as Spirits'
heat, its glowing hue filled Africa's spinal columns, ballooning
their hearts in fruit-reds ripe with honor and respect. Onè
With the undulations of that first tearing motion, the amalgamated African
tribes in Haiti had rinsed and flushed themselves in reds that's regenerative
emotion, menstrual blood, physical vigor, hard work, integrity. Flowering
forth ribbons of explorers seeking truth and the focused path.
Africa's traditional blade of red, its deep earth color is distorted,
it's Life renting itself apart, illogically
looking for rebirth (in an un-red red) through the alabaster lady,
blind and deaf, rising out of the Atlantic sea.
Dessaline's old ripped yarn,
in a sweep across her eye,
a crown of thorns on her head.
Petwo's love dagger dead.
it's Life's fluids swerving out of control,
squeezing into narrow openings
Grandmamas'/ my Haitian grandmamas/ tunnels distorted, destroyed, decimated.
Her DNA portals,
banked back down, pulsating moaning groans,
cracking the deep blue floor of the Atlantic ozone.
it's that old ripped yarn, spinning played out stories in different
colors when not flying on Coast Guard ships sailing our
Ancestor's tear-filled sound waves.
in Haiti, where i come from,
the shedding is not a cleansing of our swirl of air.
it's not Ayida-Dan-Wedo shedding her rainbow colors.
it's not Papa Legba shedding fresh new dawns,
opening hidden doors,
uniting divergent points at the crossroads.
it's not the cleansing of the birth canal for rebirth and resurrection.
it's the shedding of all life, flesh, blood-n-soul already animated
by a Black woman's breath.
deflating her curved core.
the blood flows.
And, as far as i can see,
there in Haiti (in Africa, Harlem) and globally for my lineage,
it's been pouring, flowing senselessly, pointlessly, apathetically and
unnaturally, for two, no!, close to five centuries.
The noise it makes calls to me.
it's screechingly loud.
its connective particles cling to me.
i'm carried along its vibrations,
storms, tempests, cycles, lines -
its cavernous, ghoulish melodies.
it kicks out my gut.
i truly don't know how to give it form.
But visible and invisible links force me / to try.......
Even when all I want is suburban amnesia.
Even when all I want is YOUR zen.
"Lose weight. Get laid. Win the lottery. Be a celebrity. Make
money. Have a baby. Be on Reality TV. Buy an SUV. Lose weight.”)
The noise it makes calls to me.
Video of RBM Carnegie Hall performance)
(c) 1997 Ezili Dantò. Excerpt
from The Red, Black & Moonlight monologue series, based
on Kenbe La! Crossings of a Vodun-Roots Woman by Ezili Dantò of HLLN. All rights reserved.