From My New Book “Godless Circumcisions: A Recollecting & Re-membering of Blackness, Queerness & Flows of Survivance”
“It is a peculiar sensation, this double-consciousness, this sense of always looking at one’s self through the eyes of others, of measuring one’s soul by the tape of a world that looks on in amused contempt and pity.”
-W.E.B Du Bois
“So, in my mind I’m tusslin’
Back and forth ‘tween here and hustlin’
I don’t wanna time travel no more
I wanna be here, I’m thinking..”
-Erykah Badu, Window Seat
We were born whole, announcing our presence as we emerged from the flesh of our mothers with grand aplomb, we were whole. There was nothing missing. Even then, we knew who and where we were. We knew how and when to breathe. Our heart had long began beating on its own, paying no mind to the rhyme and reason of the beating hearts around it. We knew our nakedness and had no shame, because we were whole. Nothing was missing. There was no good hair, or bad hair, if any at all. Our skin was neither too dark, nor too light, too brown or too white, we were whole. Nothing was missing. We came into this world complete and ready to continue living. Our spirits were on a mission to continue a cycle of learning and becoming that which they’d always longed for–oneness–unity with the Cosmos, or the Great Creator, Energy, or Goddess, The One Who Birthed Us All. We were born ready, until they brought out the scalpel.
The bleeding continues into adulthood–the wound unable to cauterize–as the silent sickness of performativity consumes us. We are unable to be fully present, fully us, whole, anywhere. We exist only in our separate spheres: race, gender, class, profession, religion, sexuality, sex, family, friend, employer, neighbor, caregiver, citizen or resident. I yearn to break free from these neoliberal, Godless Circumcisions, loving myself to Cosmic Reconciliations, reuniting with that which was cleaved at birth. This is my journey: a litany for survival….
Godless Circumcisions is a witty and forceful study of race, sex and politics in contemporary culture. Personal and poetic, these essays, poems and biographical trysts disrobe issues central to the black, queer and working class existences. Wilson speaks fluently—fluctuating between academic authority, queer griot and matter-of-fact honesty—to issues of racial-sexual terror; masculine anxiety; how Black men learn the erotic, sex and vulnerability; the stereotypes of Black and BlaQueer people in the United States. Paying special attention to the costs of assimilation—or cultural circumcisions—Wilson invites the reader on his personal and political journey to a practice of critical love ethics.