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Search tags: eva-morgan
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review 2018-02-26 03:49
There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé - poetry
There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyonce - Morgan Parker

"Summertime and the living is
extraordinarily difficult...

This book is uncorrected proof. You read it
on your eyelids. You sleep under it.

...You say you read it but you didn't."

 

Sometimes books of poetry are extremely accessible with easy subjects about love and trees. Sometimes the poems are so tightly forced into form that if there was ever emotion involved, it's been stamped out. Sometimes a book of poems doesn't hit the mark.

 

None of that is like Morgan Parker's poetry. She's a good poet, experimental but not just weird, she's interesting, pushing boundaries, pushing consciousness, pushing her reader into some discomfort and pain rather than counted measure. I wouldn't say these are as accessible as nursery rhymes, but they aren't so "Poetry-ish" that they deny the feels.

 

She shows off her womanhood in all its glory here: complete with body parts, multiple Beyoncé-s, list poems, poems that feel found, surprises, joy, pain, grief, deadpan recountments, teaching poems and poems of discovery. She's in turns rough and then smooth as butter. I found my sense of smell heightened from these poems, which was just bizarre until I noticed my fingertips were tingling too. It literally woke me up and figuratively too.

 

I borrowed this copy from my library, and now I'm going to own one in "less than 24 hours" says the only retailer who would get me a copy. (Maybe some stores should try just a little harder and I wouldn't have to resort to online marketplaces. Anyway...)

 

I really loved these poems in the time I had them from the library. I didn't want to give them back, but someone else should enjoy them. I can actually tell from the shape of this book that lots of people already have, which is not the usual case with public library poetry books. I know that I will love them again and again.

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text 2018-02-18 09:53
Tickboxing Screen SF: "Altered Carbon" by Laeta Kalogridis

 

It's a shame they've spent so much money on it as it isn't anything new, the only thing that is new is that you see a couple of willies (even though the willie count is going up generally, we always get an almost embarrassed shot which says look there's a willie in this but lets move back along to the tits, phew) along with the many, many boobs, bums and really as you get closer to the end, stomach churning sexual violence. There is a line spoken by one young actress which made me think that the thirteen year olds watching it (and there will be) will be off kilter for days if not months or years. And of course the scene where one actress fights naked. She seems to be fighting naked because she is a new clone and if she had been born from a vacuum pack I'd have gone with it, but she'd been reclining on a nice comfy chair which could have gone with some nice comfy sci-fi- sweatpants or even a slinky pair of pjs...but no she's naked. Some of the totemic cliches of the first two episodes are part info dump but are mostly faithful to the book. And unless I'm remembering the novel incorrectly, there's at least one Chekov's Gun lying in plain view that had to be there. There is a degree of lingering soft porn that's been overdone (e.g., the Bancroft clone vault scene), and the screenplay and acting are awkward against the expense and complexity of the effects. But I'm four episodes in and so far it's not even close to my expectations. Richard Morgan's novels are heavily invested in violence and sex. They do contrast the violent, casual decadence and immorality of the Meth's vs the street. It's the dark side to privilege that, say, Bank's Culture didn't always address with the same visceral ugliness.

 

 

If you're into good SF, don't read on.

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review 2018-02-14 21:49
This Will Be My Undoing
This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America - Morgan Jerkins

Sigh. I don't know what to say. This collection of essays is very good. Jerkins goes into the highs and lows of being a black woman in America. She goes into what it means to be a black woman while on travel (Russia and Japan). She goes into being a black woman trying to be successful, but still treated like she's from another world since many black men out there don't know what to do with a black woman who is out there being a success and doesn't have time for their foolishness. 

 

Jerkins goes into the cycles of black women in America. When you are just a kid and realize that your hair is going to take a lot of your time/sanity to deal with since you get treated a certain way if your nice is "ethnic." How she felt being one of the smartest girls in her school and how that caused backlash among other black girls. 


From there she goes into going to Princeton college and finding herself un-dateable. I had the opposite problem when I went to the University of Pittsburgh. I just used to lie and tell people I was in a relationship to be left alone. I was focused on finishing undergraduate and that was it. When I did get into graduate school was when I went and found a dude who wasn't worth anything. I am still mad that I loaned this boy (seriously he was such a child) money and he had the nerve to act like I was not being a "good" black woman since I refused to cook for him after coming home from an internship and classes. A few years ago he sent me a Facebook friend request. I was never so happy to block someone in my life.

 

A lot of Jerkins essays though go in unexpected ways. Her essay about Michelle Obama actually made me sad and mad. I still cannot believe how much Michelle Obama was attacked by the media and conservatives out there.  I don't blame her for not running for office in 2020. I would be sitting on a beach and just drinking all the wine. 

 

Another essay I loved was the one Jerkins wrote about how powerful Beyonce is to black women out there and how her latest album, Lemonade, touched a lot of us in many ways. You start to think you are the only one out there struggling with things, because as black women we are taught to keep our pain inside. Keep on walking, stay strong, don't ask for help, etc. Constantly being on guard to make sure you speak "right" around mixed groups, to not be the "angry black woman" so people can dismiss your points is exhausting as hell. 

 

Though I gave this four stars, I still marked it as a favorite. The only reason why I gave this four stars is that in some of the essays, Jerkins jumps around a lot that can get a bit confusing if you don't have context for some of the things she is talking about. Though I liked her essay on "Black Girl Magic" she goes into what the movement was about, how some people attacked it, and then a personal subject about a medical procedure she decided to undergo. It was a bit crowded in there for me in that chapter. I would have liked it if it was broken up. 

 

I also just liked the "How to Survive: A Manifesto on Paranoia and Peace" was not for me. I liked "How to be Docile" much better since she uses similar writing styles in both essays. 

 

I have never heard of Jerkins before, but am going to go out and take a look at some of her writing as soon as possible. 

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text 2018-02-14 21:33
Reading progress update: I've read 100%.
This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America - Morgan Jerkins

Wow. What a very good read! I may not agree with all things in this collection of essays, but Jerkins got me thinking which is never a bad thing. This starts off slow and it tends to jump around (essays) but there were some essays I found quite powerful which were: Monkeys Like You, A Lotus for Michelle, Black Girl Magic, Human, Not Black, and Who Will Write Us?

 

I wanted to finish this before I see Black Panther tomorrow night. I can't explain to my friends who are not POC how excited and joyful this movie makes me. It's like going out to a big block party. I have friends who I have not talked to in a long time who are meeting up for dinner first. We are dressing to the nines. And we will be living and breathing Wakanda for two hours. My aunt said to me the last time she remembers this many black people watching something that was almost solely black actors and actresses is when Roots came out. That was in 1977 (I was not alive at that time). 

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text 2018-02-14 21:27
Reading progress update: I've read 80%.
This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America - Morgan Jerkins

Lemonade is not simply a love story, but rather a multilayered portrait of all black woman experiences, all the pain that she endures, divided into eleven chapters: Intuition, Denial, Anger, Apathy, Emptiness, Accountability, Reformation, Forgiveness, Resurrection, Hope, and Redemption. 

 

 

 

Image result for i aint sorry gif 

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