Christina Springer from the Hill District team wrote these words in the week leading up to their performance. We share them here as an afterword, and a preparation for more reflection to come. You can also see photographs from the Hill District performance (as well as the other two performances) by [clicking here].
there are stories in the dirt. everything which has ever drawn
breath whispers its echoing aches and ecstasy back to the dirt…
the more I break my fingernails. sift and dig,
my eyelashes spell the words,
“W h e r e a r e y o u?
in crimson coals applied like kohl
to the inside of my eyelids
W h y c a n ‘ t I s e e y o u?”
maybe nsibidi, adrinka, heiroglyphs,
the dirt only speaks the truth
to those who see the smell alkali with river silt scorched mouths. it has
been speaking… in tongues that were once in the mouths of others.
open wide. I will pack your orifices with mud and rue laced salt. and light golden
dirt grows stories. What we know is that nothing stays
the same. our ancestors tell our children their history
must be scraped from under their parent’s fingernails
lest they become infected by scratching off the present.