Mama’s Day Poetry Playlist

If mothering is the kind of work that makes all other kinds of work possible why are mothers and grandmothers turning to the media as a last resort to plead for jobs and housing for themselves and their families? Why have we not figured out a way to nourish and support mothers in the work that they do? Why is motherhood often impoverishing? Why do women as group earn less than men as a group (around 18% less in Barbados) and why is motherhood part of the answer? Why have we not figured out work-life balance? And learnt a way to honour the multiple journeys to motherhood? That post-24, pre-35 (heterosexually) married, middle-class, with medical insurance, making more than the national average, able-bodied, sound-of-mind, mythic ideal of appropriate motherhood is a minority experience in the Caribbean.  Can’t we honour and support all moms to be the best moms that they can be?

Here’s a poetry playlist that addresses motherhood in all it’s complexity.  Happy Mothers’ Day!   Continue reading

The Revolution Will Not Be Theorised

There will be no pictures of you and smiling African children
In the village where you did a semester abroad
As a global citizen.
No cutting-edge electronic journals will be created
To recycle the same ethno-centric ideas
The revolution will not be PDFed.

There will be no videos of you offering back-handed compliments
About how surprisingly well-read the sister from the Caribbean is
There will be no videos of you offering back-handed compliments
About how surprisingly smart the sister from the Caribbean is
There will be no blog post about post modernism vs. post structuralism
Or post-humanism or post-anythingism
For the isms and schisms would have seen their final day.
The revolution will not be digitized

There will be no conference reports
And promises to stay in touch via open source electronic platforms
No email messages clarifying if Fanon is a dancehall artist
No lazy invocations of intersectionality
And positionality at the centre of the universe
The revolution will not be digitized

The revolution will not take a break for coffee (fair trade, of course)
Dirty paper cups left on the table for some Other woman to clean
The revolution will not feature a seizure-inducing Prezi
No one will complain about the indignity of going from Mac to PC
Or mistake themselves for every other living being on the planet
The real feminist will not stand up
And pat herself or himself or hirself on the back
The revolution will remove the mic from your hand and the ground from your feet.

The revolution will not be theorised, the revolution will not be problematised
The revolution will not be workshopped, will not be workgrouped
The revolution will be no conference, sister, brother, Man.2
The revolution will be…?

© Tonya Haynes, 2011

#DearCaribbean Blog Carnival Guide & Review

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De customs man at Piarco tell me dat de only ting dey does tek from Guyana is pineapple an’ plantain. — Thoughts of a Minibus Traveller

Mas. Jouvayists from Guyana, St. Kitts & Nevis, Antigua & Barbuda, Trinidad & Tobago, The Bahamas, Barbados, Jamaica, Haiti, Curacao, Canada, the diaspora and Nigeria. Making multi-directional crossings from and to Venezuela, India, Nigeria, Flatbush and Crown Heights, T&T, Grenada, Harlem, these repeating islands of the Caribbean.

Some sweet sweet love letters to the region. Dear Caribbean: Thank you for my big headOn being the daughter discovering the home of her descendants. Love note to the Caribbean.

Meditations on Caribbean feminisms. Feminists that don’t yet know they are feminists. The risky location of being an Indian feminist in the Caribbean. The liberatory potential of Vodou.

Ruminations on Caribbean Identity. Pineapple an’ plantain only. I am Your Daughter Too.

Home. Always Home. Again and Again.

Ukranian Lessons on Regional Integration (one of the most shared e-mas submissions published on the CODE RED blog).

Ol Mas meets Queer Caribbean Sexuality. Leslie, the lesbian doll.

The art of play. Play yaself!

Meet a Caribbean woman from Haiti, Guyana or the Bahamas. Listen to the voices of Caribbean men from St. Kitts and Nevis and Guyana.

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Poetry. Trujillonomics. Caribbean Crossings, In Motion. Basseterre Woman.

Writing. Like fine wine. Exquisite.

Art. Photography. Images.

e-mas is LOVE: radical, political, Caribbean, queer, poetic, renewing. 

Like true Caribbean people many of the jouvayists turn up on Caribbean time so quite a few entries just came in.  Giving thanks to Carla Moore and Feministing for using their wide reach to give the e-mas a boost.

If this guide was a bit too dizzying you can visit the e-mas page where you can read/watch/listen/view all the posts in the order in which they were submitted.

Use #dearCaribbean on twitter to keep the vibes flowing.

One Love.

Photo credit: amina. olayiwola

Uses of the Erotic: Poetry Workshop with Dorothea Smartt

At CODE RED for gender justice! we’re excited to work with the National Cultural Foundation to host this creative writing workshop with Dorothea Smartt!

It takes place this Saturday, July 27  from 2-5pm in the buildin in the former #1 Harrion’s on Broad Street which houses the Crop Over Visual Arts Gallery. It’s for intermediate and advanced poets who are at least 18 years of age. Spaces are limited so please apply NOW!

The erotic is a measure between our sense of self and the chaos of our strongest feelings. It is an internal sense of satisfaction to which, once we have experienced it, we know we can aspire. For having experienced the fullness of this depth of feeling and recognizing its power, in honor and self-respect we can require no less of ourselves.