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Lit Candles

My Twitter @KimMarieWalker tweet today: “Lit a candle on my ancestral altar in remembrance of lives lost/injured/displaced resulting from 5/31 - 6/1, 1921 BlackWallStreet massacre.”

The massacre happened in Tulsa, Oklahoma, as the crow flies, 100 miles from where my paternal ancestors lived in Ada, OK. I was reminded of the ‘race riot’ by Denise Oliver-Velez’s article, written for Daily Kos.

While I’m in Twitter I click another tweet’s heart, this time for the May 29th, 166-yr remembrance of Sojourner Truth’s epic ‘Ain’t I a Woman’ speech in Ohio.

Each ‘day’ square on the monthly calendar, hanging on my office wall featuring Buena Johnson’s transcendent artwork, cites a Black History fact. But the squares can’t contain all our history. And as I have work to do, I can’t be tethered to online missives all day, clicking hearts in appreciation.

Even as I write Truth’s Place, Part I as a memorial, I need to light a candle everyday to honor and remember us ordinary and extraordinary, us recorded and unrecorded, us known and unknown, going beyond my African American ancestors and our community’s collective place memories and achievements, to our greater Afri/Afro communities throughout the Caribbean and South America, and to the place memories of Alkebulan/African villages and multicultural peoples culled to geo-reconstruct the world’s population (the estimated 12.7 million shipped from West African coasts over four centuries, 16th – 19th).

And so, though I have ancestor altars scattered throughout my home, I vow to light a single candle every day during morning meditations to represent the daily strivings and achievements of every Afri/Afro soul over four powerful centuries and counting, linking me to the resonance of their lives…lit for them of the past, for us the present, and for future generations whose lives will undoubtedly be blurred in the browning world population. Lit for a proper start to another day of vigilance.

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