Love As A Necessity
A Note for People of Colour
It is a humbling thing, an elevating thing, an undisputedly marvellous thing to be strong like the Earth and just as powerful. To know from whence you came and to celebrate it. The lands that birthed us, they span miles and goodness grows on every inch the sun touches. These places have taught us how to hand-make joy, with our lifelines as exuberate as the skin on the back of our hands and our love lines as deep as the roots that anchor us.
To be black and of colour is to know the richness that demands of you and the joy that courses through you as reward. It is to be called to excellence whilst bound by the gaze of a society that doesn’t see it in you. It is seeing it in yourself and flourishing in it. It is seeing it in the deep smiles of your sisters, your brothers, whose faces resemble your ancestors and whose teeth leave space for the sun to shine through.
To be wholly ourselves and to relish in it, to find softness in it, find love.
Oh, what joy, made by the same hands that tie decadent head scarves atop gravity-defying curls. By feet so bound to the earth they flow as sure as the beat of the drum. It is to have food that demands your hands touch it before it first meets your lips.
To be all this is to know love as necessity, it is to know love as action, to know love as being.
It is to know how to give it to yourself first, your brother second. It is to walk with all the grace your existence has instilled in you, with your back straight and your head never bowed. Never bowed.
It is to know the strength of your homeland though you may be far from it. It is to know what it is to be plucked from your land and to flourish in whichever soil you are transplanted in. To be black and of colour is to know the beauty in that. It is to know. To know the history of that. To look in the mirror and to see God. To know the word love as action.
As wearing your hair up and proud in all its gravity-defying fullness. As speaking your mother’s tongue with the fullness of your mouth and to know that this is what it is to belong. As never shortening your name and invoking the full magic that lays in its utterance. To be of two places, sometimes three, sometimes scattered but to know the power of this. To be as we are is to be powerful, it is to be desirable, it is to be excellence in all its living and breathing glory.
To be as we are is to be love first, it is to claim it as our birthright for it is from love we were made.
To be black and of colour, it is a humbling thing, an elevating thing, an undisputedly marvellous thing.
Coco Majari - (Beyond Margins Blog Editor-in-chief)