Archive for the ‘GIFTS OF RESISTANCE 2017: creative writing’ Category

  • My Current Credo

    Date: 2017.01.29 | Category: GIFTS OF RESISTANCE 2017: creative writing | Response: 0

    I will not give in.
    I will not give in to this.
    I will not give in to fear.
    I will not give in to their fear.
    I will not give in to mine.
    I will not give in to hate.
    I will not give in to madness.
    I will not give in to darkness.
    I will not give in to ignorance.
    I will not give in to hardheartedness.
    I will not give in to small-mindedness.
    I will not give in to selfishness.
    I will not give in to anger.
    I will not give in to greed.
    I will not give in to avarice.
    I will not give in to pettiness.
    I will not give in to fools.
    I will not give in to sociopaths.
    I will not give in to narcissism.
    I will not give in to authoritarianism.
    I will not give in to nationalism.
    I will not give in to nativism.
    I will not give in to jingoism.
    I will not give in to capitalism.
    I will not give in to hegemony.
    I will not give in to apathy.
    I will not give in to complacency.
    I will not give in to inertia.
    I will not give in to lies.
    I will not give in even if they call them alternative facts.
    I will not give in to bias.
    I will not give in to the alt-right.
    I will not give in to racism.
    I will not give in to sexism.
    I will not give in to homophobia.
    I will not give in to xenophobia.
    I will not give in to Islamophobia.
    I will not give in to religious bigotry of any kind.
    I will not give in to transphobia.
    I will not give in to heteronormativity.
    I will not give in to binary thinking.
    I will not give in to ableism.
    I will not give in to toxic masculinity.
    I will not give in to efforts to normalize these things.
    I will not give in to shame me.
    I will not give in to those trying to erase history.
    I will not give in to negativity.
    I will not give in when I am feeling overwhelmed.
    I will not give in to pressure to stay silent.
    I will not give in to writer’s block.
    I will not give in.

    Copyright © 2017 Michael Kleber-Diggs All Rights Reserved

    
    
  • My neighborhood Cub – a safe(er) space?

    Date: 2017.01.29 | Category: GIFTS OF RESISTANCE 2017: creative writing | Response: 0

    I shop for groceries at my neighborhood Cub in South Minneapolis, on the corner of Minnehaha and Lake. As grocery stores goes, it is unfancy, even by Cub standards. A hood Cub, as many have called it, but it has the lowest prices and is convenient for us who live around it. I’m not a grocery shopping fan (or any kind of shopping fan), so even though I can currently afford it, I do not make a trip or extra trips to the co-op or Whole Foods a part of my routine in order to acquire fancier, healthier, better sourced foods. I go to Cub, zip up and down the aisles for what I need, pack my bags up and go home. Sunday after Sunday afternoon.

    I have lived in near-South Minneapolis for over 40 years, so I’ve watched our neighborhoods and stores evolve. We’ve always been a diverse mix along Lake Street, and I honestly don’t know when shoppers at “my” Cub or Target became typically more brown than white, but it’s been that way for a very long time.

    Like everyone else getting their shopping chores done, I don’t normally think philosophically about these stores, who is in them, or anything symbolic or political at all. I just get my groceries, or toothpaste and toilet paper, and go to whatever is next on my list of errands.

    But the Sunday after the election I went grocery shopping feeling completely raw and started noticing we the shoppers, gliding up and down the aisles in our many languages, our after-church wear, our hijabs, our sweats, our ink and asymmetrical haircuts – our carts spilling with our kids and grandkids along with our foods.

    And we appeared unbothered. I imagined us collectively feeling safe(er) – or at least able to focus on just shopping. That may not be true. Folks may have been been feeling all kinds of ways, and “safe(er)” may not have been one of them.

    But I’m wanting to believe folks that day were not worrying the way I’ve heard others worry since the election while shopping in their whiter neighborhoods and communities – fearful of being targeted because of speaking a language other than English, for wearing clothing that identifies them as Muslim, about the possibility or actuality of being hurled hateful words. “Go back where you came from.” “Build the wall.” Or having to see confederate flags in trucks in the parking lot.

    Of course crap goes down at that Cub – people are profiled and insulted – this is the U.S./Minnesota/Minneapolis, and I’m not that naive. I’ve been insulted and called out many times myself, not so much for being queer, but mostly years back when my children were young for being a white mother of brown kids (everything from being called a n-word lover to having serious shade thrown at me for being us).

    Let’s not be delusional. We live in the same old days. But it’s new day, too, with a sharper, harsher edge and even more terrifying possibilities ahead. Maybe I’m being my sentimental older white woman self looking for hope wherever I can find it – a self who I love. But maybe – just maybe – places like a neighborhood Cub can actually feel like a safe(er) space in a new kind of way.

    Maybe.

    copyright Ann Freeman
    http://upsidemyheadpayattentionnow.blogspot.com/2016/11/my-neighborhood-cub-safe-space.html

Artist Statement

Sherry Quan Lee approaches writing as a community resource and as culturally based art of an ordinary everyday practical aesthetic. Lee is a Community Instructor at Metropolitan State University (Intro to Creative Writing, Advanced Creative Writing), and has taught at Intermedia Arts, and the Loft Literary Center. She is the author of A Little Mixed Up, Guild Press, 1982 (second printing), Chinese Blackbird, a memoir in verse, published 2002 by the Asian American Renaissance, republished 2008 by Loving Healing Press, and How to Write a Suicide Note: serial essays that saved a woman’s life, Loving Healing Press, 2008.

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SHERRY QUAN LEE

HOW DARE WE! WRITE

LOVE IMAGINED

CHINESE BLACKBIRD

HOW TO WRITE A SUICIDE NOTE

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