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*(Sacred Woman)

i’m that Black girl who couldn't understand Nietzsche.

But i never had a problem understanding you are my Jailer, not my Rescuer.

in the beginning i was unnamed, unseparated and undivided in an eternal womb, Anba Dlo.
There's no description that fits it for me; except Anba Dlo where i was, it was Black. i absorbed all light even while enjoying all the light tricks above me.

Then...YOU came. With WORDS you called "eternal verities" - lights erasing Ezili Dan.

i’m the pagan you called Catholic.

Most of your approximations of me so deforested me, they could not raise up my irreducible essence, Anba Dlo. So one day, i found myself in my ancestors' land bringing development when i’ve always been totally against European development.

Back in those autumnal equinox days, i didn't know the lexicon for deconstructing ideological walls. But one night, a lifetime after the glory-in-the-flower days seemed gone forever, when reverence and splendor had flown and freedom wasn't liberating and kindness was called weakness, i caught a break.

The tools for combat crawled from my body when i went back to where i was born, both physically and spiritually. Back to Bwa Kayiman. it was an internal trip, see. Merciful Papa Legba opened a door and internally i came across intuitive flashes i could not know through thought.

Ezili Dan, an aspect of my higher self i don't have access to with my normal sensory being, she came forth. And then i was that umbilical cord, that vertical axis intersecting the horizon, creating a nexus between the spiritual and physical worlds.

The imagery of red twisted around in my head, like rising red moons. Black radiance shimmered out from every pore impaling the swelling and waning Moons to stillness.

Red, Black and Moonlight swirled like waves, percolated and hounded me, harassed me, and followed me, pouring over me like the waterfalls at Sodo. Until i lost my way within the internal struggle, entering this here poetic dream space where the curved core of my belly's flesh drew forth a knowing, uncoiled something.... A center i’ve got to get to? A past to rescue? A crashing plane to undo?

Papa Legba swung wide another locked door at the Great Crossroad - lan Gran Chemen an - and that one night all the African Tricksters re-entered my dreams...

Now they say i’m a Vodun Woman...
Now they say i’m a Vodun Woman.

A man told me, he said:
"What's your Vodun done?
What's your Vodun done?
We've gone to the moon, cloned a sheep and invented TV.
What's your Vodun done?"

"The frogs outlived the dinosaurs," i replied.
"A cockroach can survive a nuclear blast.
And yes, a man cloned a sheep and can even decide the sex of a child.
But they say
i’m a Vodun Woman...
'cause frogs and cockroaches
are mine too and i can
stretchhhhhhhhh a smile 'till… eternity comes."


*"Vodun" means "sacred" or "sacred energies" in the Fon African language.
Vodun Woman is "Sacred Woman."

Vodun Woman is excerpted from the Red, Black and Moonlight monologue series, based on the the Kenbe La books (Kenbe La!: Crossings of a Vodun-Roots Woman (c) 1998 by Ezili Danto. All rights reserved.

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