interview by kiki nicole
Introduce yourself as a song mash-up. Erykah Badu's "Master Teacher Medley" meets SZA's "Anything" Describe your last dream using only emojis. 👩🏼⚖️🤨🙅🏿♀️💨 (This might only work for iPhones) *white femme Judge* *face with raised eyebrow* *dark skinned black femme gesturing no*
*blowing smoke emoji / dashing away*
The last show you binge-watched: Queen Sugar Where do you feel most free? Conjure it here if it has yet to exist. Reading poems in a circle of Black femmes. Hiking through the redwoods. (Those were separate thoughts, but lemme go ahead and conjure that together.) Any hidden talents? I was in my high school color guard for a few years, so I can really twirl a flag. Pros & cons of breathing: Pros: bodies and their senses, which are basically magic portals.
Cons: bodies and their senses, which are basically trauma sponges. If you weren’t writing or organizing, what do you think you’d be doing? I'd be that PhD student in the Political Science department who high-key hates everything. Describe your perfect Friday night. I don’t have to flake on anyone because folks already know the deal. Full introvert energy-recovery mode. Something delicious I didn't have to cook. Who is your dream mentor & how would they help your journey/praxis? Oooh. I think my dream mentor, aside from witnessing and challenging my work, would also have tea and pull tarot with me, ask me how my spirit's doing, know that the living and the writing are intertwined and care for both the same. What is the color of love? The color of your hands.
Kemi Alabi is a poet and essayist living in Chicago. They hold down Echoing Ida, a Forward Together home for Black women and nonbinary writers.