Monday, February 14, 2011

Love: What to do with it

"And it seems to me that love, that a serious and tender concern to respect the nature, and the spontaneous purpose of other things, other people, will make manifest a peaceable order among us such that fear, conflict, competition, waste and environmental sacrilege will have no place. This is what I believe." -June Jordan

Good morning loved ones!!!!!!!!
Capitalism has made a major mistake. By inventing a commercialized day that supposedly celebrates love and trying the reduce the populace into a mass high fructose coma of faking the funk and self-pity also known as making us feel so bad about ourselves or possessive about our romantic relationships that we buy a bunch of random paper and sugar to pay off the presence of real radical transformative love.....many companies intend to (and will) make a whole bunch of money.
But because I love you everyday and I send you love letters (almost) every week and we ourselves are the most beautiful dynamic ethical version of chocolate ever imagined I want to use this sexualized, but sanitized, secular day full of prayers of desperation to share with you my deeply held fantasy. Feel free to come. True.
I venture that the capitalists have miscalculated. They think that we don't know what love means. They think that we are insecure enough in our knowledge of love to believe the lie that we have to buy it from somewhere and sell pieces of ourselves to get it. They don't know what I know...which is that we, our tribe of quirky black girls and all our communities who inspire us go way back with love. Know love like the back our eyelids. Keep love ready like a map written in our palms. We know love because we would not be here without it and we have built powerful and unlikely lives out of the knowledge that love is all around us every second embracing us and affirming us as we reach for more and more clarity about how to live it. As QBG Moya says in her brilliant post over on the Crunk Feminist Collective Blog love is not scarce and is by no means limited to the highy marketed structures of normative romantic relationships. And we know that. We see love everywhere. We choose family. Which is why we stay up late or wake up early working on zines, mixtapes, blog posts, post-its, outfits, hairstyles, meals to share with each other. Make new names for the way we feel, draw on every kinship model we can find to describe it. Language itself is just a vessel for the love between us: text messages in the middle of the day, twitterstorms of love and passion for what life feels like when we know that we are connected. Any business plan that depends on our removal from our own connection to love and each other (and every business plan does) must fail. We don't buy love. We are love, so we MAKE LOVE just by being.
They don't even know. A day full of stylized hearts invoking the name of love, the divine, is a liability in times like this. We are living in revolutionary times. When masses of people in Africa are walking out the basic truth that love is stronger than fear and as June Jordan prophesies when we fill our lives and our world with LOVE there will be no room for fear, repression, for faking the funk, for candy coma consumerist pretensions at life. If I was a capitalist I would cancel Valentine's day, hope that no one would even whisper the word love for a generation or so. But I am me. So I am shouting. I LOVE YOU QUIRKY BLACK GIRLS SO LET'S LIVE LIKE WE MEAN IT!!!!!!!

1 comment:

cellorelio said...

I used to live at the Twin Oaks intentional community in rural Virginia. It's a long-held tradition there to celebrate Validation Day on Feb. 14. The premise is simple: we celebrate mutual love, regardless of romance.

The ritual is poignant and begins weeks before. People sign up for others they want to create a card for (there are about 100 people living there). For weeks, people clip from magazines, glue things to construction paper, and sprinkle with glitter. Each card has many pages so that everyone in the community may write something validating. Most of us can come up with at least one positive thing to say, even about people we really aren't all that close to.

Once the card is finished, it's placed in an alphabetized file, and everyone spends hours writing just the right thing for each person they love. The final week is like finals week: everyone cramming to finish their projects before the term is over.

There's a real sense of camaraderie as we all shuffle to finish on time.

Come the long-awaited day, the community spruces up, decorates the dining hall, plans events, and celebrates with a big, fancy dinner. After dinner, a handful of volunteers read a few comments from each card until the audience can figure out who it belongs to. Much laughter ensues, and each of us is left with a lasting, tangible memory. I look back at the four I received during the time I was there, and my heart is always warmed.