Marabou finds great inspiration from individual people, but also finds inspirational FIRE when two brilliant minds converse. This excerpt is part of the exhibition, “God Made My Face: A Collective Portrait of James Baldwin” curated by Hilton Als at David Zwirner gallery in New York.
From a 1984 conversation between James Baldwin and writer and activist Audre Lorde:
JB: May I tell you something? May I tell you something? I might be wrong or right.
AL: I don’t know–tell me.
JB: Do you know what happens to a man–?
AL: How can I know what happens to a man?
JB: Do you know what happens to a man when he’s ashamed of himself when he can’t find a job? When his socks stink? When he can’t protect anybody? When he can’t do anything? Do you know what happens to a man when he can’t face his children because he’s ashamed of himself? It’s not like being a woman…
AL: No, that’s right. Do you know what happens to a woman who gives birth, who puts that child out there, and has to go out and hook to feed it? Do you know what happens to a woman who goes crazy, and beats her kids across the room because she’s so full of frustration and anger? Do you know what that is? Do you know what happens to a lesbian who sees her woman and her child beaten on the street while six other guys are holding her? Do you know what that feels like?
AL: Well then, in the same way you know how a woman feels, I know how a man feels, because it comes down to human being being frustrated and distorted because we can’t protect the people we love. So now let’s start–
JB: All right, okay…
AL: –let’s start with that and deal.