The Evening News - Essays And Commentaries From NPR And Other Clouds
by S. Pearl Sharp
Publication Date: Aug 15, 2015
List Price: $18.00
Format: Paperback, 174 pages
Imprint: Poets Pay Rent, Too
Publisher: Poets Pay Rent, Too
Parent Company: Poets Pay Rent, Too
A selection of forty of S. Pearl Sharp’s wide-ranging essays and commentaries broadcast on NPR programs The Tavis Smiley Show, News and Notes, Tell Me More and other broadcast and print media.
In six chapters S. Pearl riffs on news headlines,our personal issues, heroes, kinfolk, the U.S. electoral process and life lessons. Includes updates on events in the news since a piece was first published, plus some challenging and poignant responses from listeners. With 16 photographs. Cover and book design by Beverly Hawkins Hall.
from Iraq: Leaving A Better Bathroom
It’s not on the dozens of shelves in the bookstore. It’s way in the back on a poster tacked to the wall in the bathroom. That’s where I found this gentle admonition: “I always leave the bathroom a little cleaner than when I entered it.” The statement is attributed to one of the most esteemed Black leaders of the twentieth century, W.E.B. DuBois. The first time I saw the poster my thoughts only applied to how one uses a bathroom. A couple of years later it began to register more specifically as the arts community in Los Angeles in which this Black bookstore is housed. It spoke of neighborhood clean-up campaigns and movie production crews showing up here looking for that urban ghetto jungle flava. Lately DuBois words float through my head with each newscast about our occupation of Iraq: I always leave the bathroom a little cleaner than when I entered it.
from New Age Bliss
It was going to be the highlight of my birthday celebration: a seductive, relaxing hour in a flotation tank. This is a new age device that looks like a mummy case lying on the floor…leaving the floater cocooned in the dark, lying naked in a shallow bed of gently rippling water. Rhythmic sounds of the ocean help to create what is destined to be the ultimate invitation to reconnect with the universe. The moment that door clicked shut I knew I was in trouble.
from A Visit with Rosa Parks Mrs. Parks
was so gracious and showed great interest in the children. She took their books. Opening one, she turned to the page about her life and took time to silently read a passage. Her brow furrowed. Then she took the pen and began to cross out lines. My godchildren looked from one to another in stark amazement. She was crossing out stuff in their books! And with an ink pen! They always say I sat down because my feet hurt, she stated with great irritation. Scratch. The pen moved across the page deleting the passage. That’s not why I took that seat on that bus! Scratch. The next book and another few lines were erased from someone else’s version of history.
from Where Did Aunt Juanita Go? I look up just in time to see Juanita coming in for the kill. Arms raised like steel logs, mouth fixed to grind, eyes breathing fire, she is a lynx fighting for the fresh carcass. As she lunges at me a few defense classes from another decade kick into my brain and I raise my arms, cross locking them at the wrists to defend my head as she brings all her strength down, pummeling me. Struggling hard to hold my defensive block I breathe the deep breath we practice together in yoga, breathe, will the fear out of my eyes and step into her chasm. It is through her violent, wounded eyes that I reach her. She tells me she’s still fighting. I tell her it is no longer necessary. She tells me she’s backing down but this is not over. I know.
from Becoming AWARE: The Radical White Identity I first became aware of the organization when another group’s flyer caught my attention. It said, simply, “White Privilege Conference.” Now that title, without any identifiers, can send some Black folks’ blood pressure right off the chart.