Last month, Akosua Adoma Owusu screened a collection of her short films at Black Cinema House. Following the screening, she and Professor Terri Francis, spoke a bit about her work. At a point, Owusu mentioned that the initial motivation for her film work was a search for home and belonging. She’s Ghanaian but was born and raised in the United States.
Professor Olasupo Laosebikan, who was in the audience, replied that he believes Owusu had found a home in the art she creates. Francis added that she’d felt like she found a home of her own within Owusu’s work. There was something illuminating about this idea of finding/creating home in your own work or others. It explains why I revisit certain works, why I keep them close even when I’m not reading them. It adds purpose to my own work.
This past Saturday night I was reading the latest issue of the Indiana Review. I’ve been reading it for the past week or so and and it’s filled with some good-weird fiction. It’s been entertaining and a series of craft lessons. But Saturday night I was reading it because I wanted to avoid the fact that the NYPD had just officially declared war against civilians. When I came to this poem by Nate Marshall ‘juke’, I immediately thought of what Laosebikan said. I kept going back to it, wanting to stay inside of it: