Monday, September 10, 2012


"Recognising the anger
trying not to see red and disappear
or end up with time lost
to the Bermuda triangle of troubled,
strangulated till I black out:
the  hurricane walks."

The piece below is me channeling an almost imperceptible fraction of Three Furies deadly deamonism.  While pursuing an understanding of women's anger in the 21st Century for a project with the same name, I discovered that The Furies are not often fairly depicted. What they represent is often misinterpreted and the term daemon related to dark forces and something evil. But this is not the case.

"Daemon" is actually a much older form of "demon"; daemons have no particular bias towards good or evil, but rather serve to help define a person's character or personality. The ancient Greeks' concept of a "personal daemon" was similar to the modern concept of a 'guardian angel'—eudaemonia is the state of being helped or protected by a kindly spirit. 

  Their aka name is "The Kindly Ones", who when incanted, rain torment as retribution upon an offender and render them a defenseless, powerless victim under the focus of their wrath. But summoner beware, you have lifted the lid off volcano. Get out of the way of the lava flow.

However, when the Three Furies were being The Eumenides, "The Kindly Ones", they were making full acknowledgement of an injustice done to Family, to Woman, to Child. They metered out terrorr and torment to the degree of punishment they perceived appropriate
to the gravity of a perpetrators crime. It would be relentless, merciless until the perpetrator became literally insane. Their Fury did not have earthly measure. It was other worldly and could not be placated unless the summoner/victim put forward a good argument in favour of the perpetrator the victim had summoned them for. Human compassion might kick in. It might not, but pulling the reigns on the Furies was not an easy task.

"No prayer, no sacrifice, and no tears could move them, or protect the hapless object of their persecution; and if ever they felt that the criminal would escape them, they called in the assistance of the goddess Dike (Justice). The Erinnyes were closely connected to Dike, for the merciless maintenance of strict justice was their utmost concern."  - Source

Bearing this in mind, while writing,  I was enabled to be more objective, and although the subjective battled with me, my relationship to my own feelings of anger seemed justified as I thought about the effluence of Fury Power in a universal capacity. The Furies story kindly offered me a space to process.
I had to look deeper into MY story and face some 'demons' of my own: my fatherless status, the fractious mother/daughter relationship I negotiated daily after Mum's long hours at work, the bullying in school that paralysed me, relationships that flopped abysmally, racist name-calling, the endless job search after my degree,  the glass ceiling I hit as a woman of colour and the whole time trying to fit in when "i am an endangered species... i am a woman, i am an artist..."

Why was it that in the past I would wake up some mornings mad? Just plain angry?  Why were my toes clenched tight under the bed covers? What was with this line entrenched in my brow from a frown I had no idea why I was pulling? Why was it when I looked into the mirror, I'd see an intense fizzing plasma, pulsating till the walls seemed to hum with its ferocity? What the hell was it?  What was feeding it? Who had planted it there? And Who Gave Them Permission?! EVERYBODY BETTER WATCH THEIR BACK' TODAAAAY!!!!

Aaaaand breeeeeathe.....

 This is not an uncommon feeling. I have heard these similar symptoms many times before from other female friends of all races, ages and abilities.

Anger is a symptom for something being very wrong. It is your body telling you a perceived injustice has been done. It is a red flag to wake up, be aware, stay alert. That alerting might be to watch your back, be good to yourself, protect yourself, do not leave yourself vulnerable: "there are trip wires everywhere".
So what happens to women who get angry? The ones with rebel spirits? The ones who have been through wars in their own homes? Who do daily battle? When it comes a dialogue about women's anger, women often feel an inadequacy and a fear? What is there to fear? And what about the root of anger being fear itself? Where is the language to discuss this fear if we do not practice talking about it? What is it about a woman's anger or fury that makes

Scarlet red
Crushed cherry red

They just walk in and take my shit
I intend to graduate from the University of Life
But people walk in and take my shit
Social schooling chaining me to a miseducation
Of my feminine representation
People walked in and took my shit!

I am dissected
Barbie cookie cutter borders cut across
the lay lines of my life line
So many boxes to tick, limits that I won't fit
My intellect coils around the reality of it
realising my curved body parts fetisizied
into high class hooker art
They just walk in and take my shit

Dragon breath red
Meteor crash red

The context of culture plays me like a pawn
Every morning, I'm expected to confess my sins
For the redemption of my sex and my skin
The consequence of living in a century of explosive extremes

And here's me
In my room, here,
Always the understanding one
little ol' me
on the ground, at grass roots
trying find my roots, trying to plant new shoots

I listen to the harp of my heart
I chart the path of my art
Oh, so many false starts with the promise a of a slice of a devils pie
when I should just wake up, Woman Up and
just bake my own
But people walk in a take your shit
They take every ingredient
That makes you human
Stomp on the seedling spices
That makes me into woman
Girls ripen, deformed in plastic packaging
in grow-bags fertilised by
worms of lies
Peeps just walk in, take your shit
break the splints for your broken wings
push you off cliffs with a smile and tell you to fly

Revolution red
heat of the moment red
fire earth core red

I see crystal clear, I see whats going on here
Bottom of the food chain, dark skinned and a woman
Double whammy!
What am I supposed to do?! Join this long ass queue?
To booty bounce, an ounce of my flesh
to feel my finger brush the hems of my dreams out  of reach?
Am I meant to croon the notes with knot in my throat
from a song sheet of assimilate
or hear the quake and crack of my spirit break, the snap of my back
like the bows of a boats going home Old Caribbeans forgot
they held right there in the palms of their hands?
Is the price of the ticket to get to my nirvana?
Well, I don't wanna!

Slaughter house blood red flag to my sanity

I want to fight
Fight and hide at the same time
But I have to push this frustration further down into the deep
Into the dimmest recesses of my mind
where the child in me sits alone
Force the injustice into my bones
Till the marrow is thick with sorrow

I want to tell someone...
But who has ears sensitive enough hear through all the white noise
Ears big enough to listen, I mean really listen...
- Zena Edwards©

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