the vessel: dimension of freedom (after and with Benjamin Banneker)

14 11 2014


Last night was the first Brilliance Remastered Bright Black Broadcast and it was miraculous.   Guided by the brilliance of Benjamin Banneker, and some of his enduring texts we engaged the rhetoric of our integrity, the equations of our freedom, the core beliefs that inform our problem solving, the locations of the planets and the trajectories of our own orbits in relationship to creativity, freedom, institutions, work, family and everything else.   At the end of our time together we created our own three part group poem in response to Benjamin Banneker’s “A Mathematical Problem in Verse” a beautiful poem about some drunk people who have plenty of confidence and specificity (take that respectability politics!) as a way of reflecting on the dimensions of our freedom.

the vessel

by the participants in Bright Black Broadcast #1: Benjamin Banneker

(after Benjamin Banneker’s “A Mathematical Problem in Verse”)

i. the diametrical proportions of freedom

seven answers for every one question

three loves for every one life

one breath for every thousand years

one thousand heartbeats for every one connection

one circle for one change

one thousand stars for every one night sky

ii. the depth of freedom

deep enough to fill sound

deep enough to dance in technicolor

deep enough to invite the whole family and community in

deep enough to get baptized  in every single day

deep enough to hold our energy

iii. freedom capacity

it can hold my imperfections

it can hold our pain

it can hold our hands

it can hold our dreams

it can hold the past and the future at the same time

it can hold heart

it can hold space

it can hold light

Brilliance Remastered Bright Black Broadcast #1: Benjamin Banneker (This Thursday)

10 11 2014

BannekerThe Brilliance Remastered Bright Black Broadcast Series is an opportunity for contemporary black intellectuals to glean lessons from black intellectuals during the era of US enslavement.  Anti-blackness and structures of exploitation continue to impact the lives of black intellectuals in the United States.  With guest experts, poetic activities and archival information the intellectuals gathered will support each other in imagining intellectual freedom in our time.

Thursday November 13th at 7pm Eastern Time

Broadcast 1 is in honor of Benjamin Banneker and occurs the week of his birthday.  Looking Banneker’s mathematical, poetic and astronomical work as an oracle for freedom now, this broadcast will invite participants to map the stars differently and claim the power of a bright black universe.

There are 8 spots for live participation.  Reserve your spot on eventbrite here: