• Mama Outsider: Reminder Notes to a Dancing Girl

    “It is the weekend Beyoncé releases her “Formation” single and a bad queen has just performed it without breaking a sweat. I am watching the queen and learning that the way not to sweat is to move so little that every move seems like drama. I’ve got the not moving part down, which is how I am here at a club with a roommate whose friends want to meet the Black girl she let live in her house.”

  • Mama Outsider: How I Learned the Definition of Obscene

    “I was unstable and grieving and more suited for a patient friendship than the dramas of new love. But I loved her and in thirst, I acted unlovingly by climbing into a lap in which I wasn’t welcome. My behavior is the definition of obscene.”

  • Mama Outsider: No Place Like Home

    “Every day since my father died has been at least a little fucked up. There is no such thing as a non-fucked up day when you are a Daddy’s girl without a father.”

  • Mama Outsider: Learning Black Zen in a White House

    “Why some people mean? One income that isn’t a livable wage plus racism will do that to you, and you can’t imagine the rage until you’ve lived it.”

  • Mama Outsider: When Your Mother Thanks You for Keeping Your Baby

    “Instead, I jump back into the mind of the girlish woman I was at 28, the one who didn’t know enough about the consequences for unacceptable motherhood to plunge headfirst into the fire. It has taken me much longer than my mother to see the gift of my own naiveté.”

  • Wherever West Is

    “Loving women and loving the land are the two things I told myself I would never do, and somehow, they got all tangled up in each other.”