Daughters of the Dust

Poetry in Motion.

I am the first and the last.
I am the honored one and the scorned one.
I am the whore and the holy one.
I am the wife and a virgin.
I am the barren one...
And many are my daughters.

I am the silence that you cannot understand.
I am the utterance of my name.

And so begins the poetry that is the film Daughters of the Dust.

The ancestor and the Womb, they one...

Set in 1902 on the Sea Islands off the coast of Georgia, Daughters of the Dust is the story of the Peasant family, a family on the verge of physically being split apart. Some members are eager to leave the islands and move to the mainland, others are ambivalent, while others intend to die on the Sea Islands.

When you leave these islands, you ain't going to no land of milk and honey...

Remarkably, Julie Dash wrote, directed and produced this experiences... proving less is more.

Never forget who we is and how far we done come...

Daughters of the Dust requires its viewer to sit still, and quiet that part of you that wants to answer the phone, run to Dairy Queen, or watch something slick on TV.

I'm trying to learn you how to touch your own spirit...

Instead, you must suffice with shots of old twisting trees, the ocean's waves crashing onto empty beaches, and wild horses running past.

Call on the old Africans; let them touch you with the hand of time...

Some might feel frustrated when watching Daughters of the Dust because they feel so far away from what they see. What relevance does this have to my life right now?

There's enough uncertainty in life without having to worry about what tree your husband is hanging from...

Some think it is easier to forget. Then you do not have to be bothered with the burdens that come with remembering.

Do you remember those that you chose to forget? Mahamoudia.

But then you are lost.

Where we're headin' Nana, they'll be no need for an old woman's magic...
Spirit is worth more than flesh.
We are the children of those who chose to survive.

Daughters of the Dust forces you to reflect on yourself. Are you living in the manner that your great grandmother or great great grandmother intended for you. Whose legacy do you maintain?

Those eighteenth century Africans watch us...

Watch Daughters of the Dust. Look for the spirit of your ancestors. Let it trigger something that you are meant to remember.

They the last of the old and the first of the new...

{liberatormagazine.com exclusive feature}
by Zora Lynum
{The Liberator Magazine 1.2 #2, 2002}

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