One of the goals of Eternal Graffiti is to continue the conversation. That “conversation” can be about race or art, privilege or poverty; it can be about gender or identity. It can be about the horrible treatment of transgendered people in todays society. It can be about a conglomerate of things, but it needs to be done in a fashion that creates safe spaces.
Some of the things I have learned as I have been trying to understand exactly what that means: it’s not about always getting things right or always saying all the right things, because honestly sometimes you will get it wrong. It’s about listening more than you talk, being humble when being knocked down a notch when you put your foot in your mouth, it’s about just trying to be a good human…
Be a good human
What I know of being an ally is that it’s not up to me to define what that looks like; it’s for me to listen, to be aware. It is more about examining me and my views, checking my prejudices and privileges. It’s not all about rallies and petitions; it’s about truly reflecting love.
As the conversation continues Eternal Graffiti is dedicated to always having a space where all voices are welcome. Which leads me into the subject matter of the poem that was selected.
So on to the Poem:
I don’t know Danez Smith personally but I was crazy impressed by his poetry, he is a juggernaut, a hurricane ripping across a calm ocean. I am sure I have not even scratched the surface of his work with the couple of poems I listened to. He has a way to talk about a very layered topic with passion and lazer intelligence. There is a subtle dominance in his work that says – you don’t have to agree, but you will NOT deny me, I am here and my story will be told. And got damn does he tell it! There are alot of voices on the poetry scene but his, cracks the sky, it is a rain dance in a barren field.
The hardest part of choosing Danez was decideing what poem to highlight.
This poem “Genesissy” slayed me from the first time I heard it, and continued to impress me with each replay. I knew instantly I wanted to spotlight it. He gives the one line set-up in the beginning, but then he does something that I absolutely love, he did not just rant about it, he did not just yell the injustice…He draws you in, the narrative he uses in the beginning is humorous, but then it just gets stone cold gorgeous as he hits the later part of the poem. He uses so many poetic devices, and does it while making it look soo easy.
Do yourself a favor and connect to this poet!
Really really dope piece of work
I am sure this will be the first of many Danez Smith poems on Eternal Graffiti
You can pick up a copy of his book “[insert] boy” here