Occupy for Bread and Roses

It was the first time my ex had kicked me out of the house, and I don’t remember for what anymore.  Something stupid and petty, I’m sure.  This time would be just the first of several times, and it was always a power move on his part.  His way of exerting his control over me: I disagreed about something we heard said on the radio?  Bam!—on the streets in the middle of the night (if it weren’t for my friends who always took me in when this shit went down.)

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On “Black Diaspora of the the 20th Century”

“Blackness” is multivalent concept that has been shaped by cultural and historical events, from colonial trade to desegregation, these global events have shaped African, American, and British societies as we know them today.

The link below highlights the black experience in the 20th century through the lens of literature. Whereas Malcolm X’s autobiography deconstructs the disillusionment of freedom and equality in America, the poetry of Jackie Kay’s the Adoption Papers explores biracial identity, parenthood, and #LGBTQ+ issues, all of which are themes that are included in Octavia Butler’s dystopian science fiction novel. “Parable Of The Sower”. Individually, the texts present the multifaceted nature of blackness, together they highlight systemic challenges people of the African diaspora have faced.

The authors and titles featured in my post Black Diaspora Literature of the 20th Century illustrate core problems during the cultivation of a black identity, using their lived experience, their poetry, and their allegories to tell the story African diaspora. We live in a post-colonial word, but xenophobia is still a real issue that has no borders, but seeks to build walls of false security. As we draw closer to 2020, let us take a look into the past so that we can focus on co-creating a more inclusive future.


In solidarity.

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Michael Ray

Bachelors of English Literature
Humboldt State University.

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Paradise Memorium

“Paradise will never burn,” they swore.

The long-time locals gathered on the ridge to stare at the 23 thousand acres of flame and blackness across the canyon.  “Trust me,” they said.  Pontificating with their cigarettes and pointing with their beers at the perpetual sunset, writhing and leaping against the night sky. 

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