Sunday 18th February

9pm

Ingrid, SE8 4S

a litany for survival:: audre lorde

For those of us who live at the shoreline
standing upon the constant edges of decision
crucial and alone
for those of us who cannot indulge
the passing dreams of choice
who love in doorways coming and going
in the hours between dawns
looking inward and outward
at once before and after
seeking a now that can breed
futures
like bread in our children's mouths
so their dreams will not reflect
the death of ours;

For those of us
who were imprinted with fear
like a faint line in the center of our foreheads
learning to be afraid with our mother's milk
for by this weapon
this illusion of some safety to be found
the heavy-footed hoped to silence us
For all of us
this instant and this triumph
We were never meant to survive.

And when the sun rises we are afraid
it might not remain
when the sun sets we are afraid
it might not rise in the morning
when our stomachs are full we are afraid
of indigestion
when our stomachs are empty we are afraid
we may never eat again
when we are loved we are afraid
love will vanish
when we are alone we are afraid
love will never return
and when we speak we are afraid
our words will not be heard
nor welcomed
but when we are silent
we are still afraid.

So it is better to speak
remembering
we were never meant to survive.

- Audre Lorde, The Black Unicorn

A Litany For Survival: the Life and Work of Audre Lorde

Ada Gray Griffin and Michelle Parkerson | 1995 | 52 min

 

An epic portrait of the eloquent, award-winning Black, lesbian, poet, mother, teacher and activist, Audre Lorde, whose writings -- spanning five decades -- articulated some of the most important social and political visions of the century. From Lorde's childhood roots in NYC's Harlem to her battle with breast cancer, this moving film explores a life and a body of work that embodied the connections between the Civil Rights movement, the Women's movement, and the struggle for lesbian and gay rights. 'A Litany for Survival' features interviews with many of Lorde's fellow poets and activists, including Adrienne Rich, Sapphire, and Sonia Sanchez--all of whom pay tribute to Lorde's impact as a mentor and inspirational force.

 

Audre Lorde – The Berlin Years 1984 to 1992

Dagmar Schultz | 2012 | 79 min

with an introduction by Sarah Ahmed (this is a written intro which we will read out loud)

 

American poet, librarian, and civil rights activist Audre Lorde resided in Berlin, Germany during a critical personal and political time. This documentary chronicles an untold chapter of Lorde’s life: her empowerment of Afro-German women, as she challenged white women to acknowledge the significance of their white privilege and to deal with difference in constructive ways. Lorde's influence on the German political and cultural scene was during a decade that brought about the fall of the Berlin Wall and the reunification of East and West Germany. Her significant contributions, spanning discourses on racism, xenophobia, anti-semitism, classism, and homophobia within the Black movement and the Black and white women’s movement, continue today. Lord’s encouragement that Afro-German women begin writing their history and stories to form political networks in Germany influenced authors such as May Ayim, Katharina Oguntoye and Ika Hügel-Marshall. During these years, Lorde’s diagnosis of terminal cancer left her American doctors without hope for her survival. Berlin became her third home where she received naturopathic treatment in part responsible for the next eight years of her life.
 

 

Happy  Birthday  Audre   Lorde! 

 

 

Audre would have been 84 today. Join us in remembering this inspirational and amazing woman by watching some films together and, if time allows, read some of her poems.