Alexis Pauline Gumbs

like seeds
or a guide to black feminist time travel 
via twitter @alexispauline

this is the map made by marker-stains/ technicolor testament to what we want and how many dirty man made miles we will print our hands into

this is the morning melting across timezones/afternoon of ancient questions/ can you hear me/ can you see me/ are you there

this is the meet-up of movement and memory/ how our ancestors kiss each other in the stairwells of satellites/mischievous and right on time

so this is for the place past noon where audre burns herself into khaliah’s CDR lusting for the mail and me

this is the toni cade sent dream of women on buses and fertile dinner tables in the name of @moyazb

here is the cross street in Harriet's salsa soul smile/flashing over the archival scanner/ to the beat of it is still 1974 somewhere

to find Jewelle Gomez's study take a left at the bee-kept poetic license plate honey/knock half as many times as your pulse says yes

slip secrets in the shoes by the door/pack promise into potluck plates left/ this sideways eight of exchange/this always excuse to come home

sage through the scent of homeless archives/ face the nomad pension of lives overspent eating dreams believing that you would come

maryanne’s hair gets shorter while story grows long into your wrists/ these are the twists unpruned trellised listen into trust

this is the every workday text message from Max in the spats in Jackson/ ville/ starting good morning and ending all caps HOPE PRAY FAITH

this is the decades long relevance of jodeci for the butch groove/ boi band repertoire/ gyrate into a one handed push up & hope nobody faints

this is 87 years of egypt, yemen, jordan and iran blasting through Ms. Vera's tight set mouth/ saying youth catch on saying not gonna take it

sing a scalp remembrance spell for every strand of my knotted hair left under someones guest bed rug or couch/ here's to our DNA connection

start a fall down drag out tumblr for every rumbling elder stomach whom our forgetting has not fed

line the living room and hall with lent books and breakthrough memories/ low enough that the kids can palimpsest them all in crayon

fill a vehicle older than your siblings with cell-phone numbers and snacks/retrostalk the beating of your heart

this is where it happens/this is what is happening/you are here #womenofcolorcatalyzingknowledgein18tweets

Alexis Pauline Gumbs is a queer black troublemaker and a black feminist love evangelist with a PhD in English, Africana Studies and Women’s Studies from Duke University. She is the founder of BrokenBeautiful Press and the co-creator of the Mobile Homecoming project. She lives and loves in Durham, North Carolina. Follow her at

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