Wednesday, February 11, 2015


In Audre Lorde's The Cancer Journals (1980), she writes about all kinds of thoughts and analysis.  Here's a paragraph that I circled with asterisks:

In becoming forcibly and essentially aware of my mortality, and of what I wished and wanted for my life, however short it might be, priorities and omissions became strongly etched in a merciless light, and what I most regretted were my silences….I was going to die, if not sooner then later, whether or not I had ever spoken myself.  My silences had not protected me.  Your silence will not protect you.

It's not that I'm panicked, clutching the possibility of death.  And it's not that I refuse to consider possibilities, that I'm refusing to experience the thing that am experiencing.  I'm a woman with a brain tumor.  I've had surgery twice, and I'm now on my second chemotherapy.  I've been on radiation. I'm grateful for all of those.  And even more so, I'm grateful for the support I've gotten--I've written about that before, for good reason.  I'm grateful.

My speaking has brought up a particular set of challenges that I notice much of the time.  I wrote about it in the City Paper (came out today--go read).  Lorde's writing here is incredible powerful for me.  She has the opportunity to say what she needs to say--to be outspoken, thoughtful, challenging the oppression that's everywhere, loving.  Your silence will not protect you.

I'm considering putting that somewhere it's visible to me.

So now go read the column.

And here's a random video of Maybelle doing a selfie video.

Ms. Mary Mack--you can watch even with no picture here! from Maybelle on Vimeo.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, my god. All of this -- all of it. Your words, Audre Lord's words and that holy video of Maybelle. It's like a lady church right here on Every Little Thing.

    Bless you a million fold, Alison!