Flashback Friday: Ida B. Wells

This post was written by Velynn Brown for our Women’s History Month theme on March 25, 2015. Southern trees bear strange fruit Blood on the leaves and blood at the root Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees Before Billie Holiday sang the lyrics above at Cafe Society, […]

Books Can Keep You Stitched Together

The first book to ever hold this type of “keepin” power for me was, Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. I slept with this book under my pillow every night. I was even willing to pay the “lost” fine fee that my middle school library would eventually charge me for not returning it. […]

Black Love: A Sacred Oneness

In this country the Black body has always been subject to the breaking and the taking—yet we’ve clutched tight to the promise to love. Against all odds we willed our oneness. Finding the other half of ourselves in moonlit fields, dimmed juke joints and strobe-lighted clubs. Safe places allowed us to wash away the touch […]

Arugula or Collards: What type of greens are you?

“So, Velynn tell me about yourself. What words would you choose to describe yourself?” How many times have you been asked to describe the breadth and depth of your whole person “in just one sentence, please”? Impossible, right? While I am tempted to respond by singing Whitney Houston and Chaka Khan’s female anthem, “I’m Every […]

When You Can’t Find the Merry in Your Christmas

It’s here whether we like it or not—Christmas. For many this season is filled with the fullness of family togetherness. The turkey with all the trimmings. It is the time for unwrapping the red-ribbon-gift we placed first on our list. It is the season of sparkly lights and the steady fragrance of evergreen. Cut trees […]

Finding Comfort in the Battle

This year has been cruel y’all–like the stinging hits of freezing rain or cutting winds of a blizzard storm-harsher climates have shifted our atmosphere. The down pour of political and civil unrest has left our country drenched in hate, apathy and fear. Racial divides, Trump’s win, continuous murders of Black Lives, Standing Rock, the threat […]

The Time I Ruled the World

Before there was Barack or Hillary, there was me. Black. Female. President. In the photo above, I had just been elected Beaumont Middle School’s first Black President. I knew in my heart I had enough love to change the world—one heart at a time. Our student body council bonded quickly in the name of “equality” […]

Making of A Remnant Keeper

Someone just blew up my neighborhood with an AK57 etched with these letters- g e n t r i f i c a t i o n. My layman’s definition of the word is “moving Black folks, so white folks can move in.” Black folks are not alone in this war. Our Native American brothers and […]

Holding on to the Baton of a King

Today many of us will choose to honor the dream and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, while others wait in disgust for America to make due on its overdrawn check, written in the name of “liberty and justice for all.” What will you decide to do with this day and this dream of […]