The Black House by Kendi Tarichia
Ayyyee hellooo Black People!
Y’all know me and my love of our people, our culture, our EVERYTHING.
So I'm here to gas y’all up once again.
First of all, big thank you to BCS for an incredible Black History month. Any opportunity to celebrate our heritage, our Ancestors, our culture, our accomplishments, to celebrate US is MagiK to me.
So, i'm going to build off an analogy my brother in NS, Sobaz shared recently.
The house analogy.
We’re all in this house together.
We’re now all Black.
We didn’t choose it. We didn’t know it was going to happen.
Kind of like the sorting hat in harry potter,
The house was predetermined.
Now, the house, its complex.
There’s a lot going on.
People of different tribes, from great Kingdoms, practicing different religions, upholding their own ideologies all thrown into this house.
Our identity/relationship to and with Blackness is as vast as the shades of Black in our house.
From white passing, to the deepest midnight Black.
Our Black house is on fire though.
Our Black house is FIRE though.
Lets start with our house is fire.
Our house is litty.
It’s the culture house
It’s the music house
It’s the sports house
It’s the creativity house
It’s the solutions house
Its the “what the fuck are beauty standards we are fucking magic” house
It’s the rib cracking funny house.
As in we got Beyonce, Kyrie, Obama’s, Nkrumah, Hampton, Prince, MJ, Jordan, Lauryn Hill, Audre Lorde and so many more.
Even on this Island,
We got capacity.
We got doctors, activists, community leaders, politicians, educators, creatives, many of whom are reading this.
*Give yourselves a round of applause*
Our collective house has existed for a long time now.
Way before any of us were born.
We been here. We been Great.
We are here. We are Great.
Like any house,we have some internal and external issues.
Internally, the floorboards are creaking,
Remnants of the pain and twisted history of us selling one another,
Some of us have jammed the door shut because we believe only a certain type of Black deserves to be in the house.
The windows are broken, and others are letting non Black folx in through the windows to steal and loot.
Our fans in the house aren't working, we don’t support each other's work.
There's roaches and mice, those that go running to report to their preferred house the ins and outs of the Black house.
There’s a lot of Good and a lot of issues in our house.
Externally the house is on fire.
Many of us know it's on fire.
Some of us can smell the smoke but don't want to accept its a fire
Many are head shaking, body convulsing denying there is a fire.
And some are working on disrupting that fire.
But the point is, our house is on fire. Our collective house is on fire.
We can spend all day and night, fighting over windows, doors, floorboards,
The house is still on fire.
As it was intended to be.
And in some parts of the house,areas of the world, its ablaze, an inferno,
In other areas, the smoke has just turned to flame.
But the point is the collective Black house is on fire.
I will mention the white house once.
To make a point
The white house is empty, maybe some senior men in it.
Its heavily guarded.
Its overflowing with our money.
Full of our artifacts.
Full of our inventions.
The people belonging to the house are not home because they are out setting our house on fire, stealing, looting, appropriating all this to increase the money in their house.
The women traumatize us with their tears and fragility, the men traumatize us with their guns and chains.
They keep our house on fire to distract from their always expanding, full of stolen things house that no one lives in.
And they do this knowing
That if our house burns down, and none of us are left,
A monument will be erected in honor of whiteness on our ashes/graves and they will charge Indigenous and POC a fee to see what will happen to them if they do not comply.
So before we address anything else, our existence depends on dealing with that external fire.
We create a barricade of fire.
A ring of fire around our house.
We fight fire with fire.
Fun fact, fires are classified into five types.
We need to fight this fire with a different fire.
A different type of fire. An unusual fire.
The fire of Malcolm, Hampton, Fanon, Hooks, Lorde and Assatta.
We fight fragmentation, racism with solidarity, unity.
We fight divisiveness with togetherness.
Our fire will be a fire of self love.
Of radical Black love.
This is a fire that while keeping us safe from whiteness, will also heal the historic pain coming out in the floorboards,
a fire that will open the doors so all Black people can thrive in the house,
a fire that will seal the windows and keep us warm.
It's a fire of solidarity.
Of realizing we are all dealing with a dangerous fire that is intent on hurting every single one of us.
And that every single one of us is the key, the flame, the fire that keeps them from burning us ALL down.
A fire that gets so big and so strong that it continues and protects our children and their children,
Let us become a legacy of fire makers.
Our sisters keepers.
So when one of us catches fire,
radical Black self love fire, go light your friends on fire.
Light your sisters on fire.
Light your brothers on fire.
Light your communities on fire.
Love your sisters.
Love your brothers.
Love your communities
Find your sisters.
Find your brothers.
Find your communities.
Support your sisters.
Support your brothers.
Support your communities.
Uphold your sisters.
Uphold your brothers.
Uphold your communities.
Of all ages.
And our ring will get bigger and stronger
And tighter. And closer.. Less fragmented.
And we will be safer and stronger.
And our Black house will be safe,
It will be here.
And we will continue to be here.
To be great.
Written by King Kxndi. Kxndi is a Black Islander, grew up in Charlottetown then Mermaid, P.E.I. Kxndi has been passionate about Black Islanders since she first heard about them in a Grade 12 P.E.I. geography class. Since then, Kxndi has collected stories from Black and Indigenous elders, community members and their descendants to piece together the untold story of Black Islanders. Kxndi’s writing has a heavy focus on Black joy, self love and becoming a revolutionary.