Nobody’s gift,
immortalised In a glut of ink,
unwrapped so, it breathes –
unclothed it is art; unclothed, inhuman-
a symbol of freedom encased in charcoal
for any purpose but the one
she’d sat for. 


When Your (Brown) Body is a (White) Wonderland


This may meander.

Miley Cyrus made news this week with a carnival-like stage performance at the MTV Video Music Awards that included life-size teddy bears, flesh-colored underwear, and plenty of quivering brown buttocks. Almost immediately after the performance many black women challenged Cyrus’ appropriation of black dance (“twerking”). Many white feminists defended Cyrus’ right to be a sexual woman without being slut-shamed. Yet many others wondered why Cyrus’ sad attempt at twerking was news when the U.S. is planning military action in Syria.

I immediately thought of a summer I spent at UNC Chapel Hill. My partner at the time fancied himself a revolutionary born too late for all the good protests. At a Franklin Street pub one night we were the only black couple at a happy hour. It is one of those college places where concoctions of the bar’s finest bottom shelf liquor is served in huge fishbowls…

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This is going to be my all new grown-up blog for any complete articles/criticism/poems/responses I manage to trawl out. This, is tumblr mark two, a page for thinking and sharing without any of the procrastination or fanfiction. This space is mine, and, unless otherwise stated, I’m going to write everything that is written here! 

A note on the header, Anecdote Of The Jar by Wallace Stevens is one of my favourite poems. It represents everything I like about literature and everything I try to achieve in my own writing. I don’t know what category or genre it falls into, or even what it really means. You could say the poem is significant for its socio-environmental messages- conveying the corrupting and all consuming nature of man, or, that it is significant for it’s sparse, minimalistic nature, parodying the Romantic’s attempts to fuse themselves with nature through art. I love it though, for its complete ability to convey VASTNESS. A sensation so juxtaposed with the modest nature of the poem that it is all the more remarkable for existing. You can almost sense the ‘slovenly wilderness’ being hemmed by the inconceivable greatness of a jar at once of the ground and  “tall and of a port of air”. This imagery melds beautifully with the beat and dusty location of Tennessee, and you realise that the jar couldn’t be anywhere else. Further, the particular use of ‘dominion’ injects a hallowed sense of eternal vastness that can only come with religious experience, the effect being that the reader in this instance create a cathedral of space for the jar, elevating the vastness to something almost holy- or at least greater than us.The whole poem is a gorgeous example of imagism, where no unnecessary words are poured onto the page, but each semi-nonsensical sentence is carefully constructed to portray an exact image and sensation. 

I placed a jar in Tennessee, 
And round it was, upon a hill. 
It made the slovenly wilderness 
Surround that hill.

The wilderness rose up to it, 
And sprawled around, no longer wild. 
The jar was round upon the ground 
And tall and of a port in air.

It took dominion every where. 
The jar was gray and bare. 
It did not give of bird or bush, 
Like nothing else in Tennessee