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Some Thoughts On Mercy by Ross Gay
July 16, 2013 11:33 PM   Subscribe

An essay on race, fear, imagination, and beekeeping
posted by Joe in Australia (19 comments total) 61 users marked this as a favorite

 
Fantastic!
posted by maggieb at 12:14 AM on July 17, 2013


A great post! Thanks!
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 12:22 AM on July 17, 2013


That was beautiful, thanks for posting.
posted by nevercalm at 12:53 AM on July 17, 2013


Thank you for this.

It hurt to read, and my soul weeps at a world I do not and cannot know.

But that perhaps I can, in some small way, make better.
posted by But tomorrow is another day... at 1:06 AM on July 17, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wow. That was a wonderful essay, I still have the chills running up and down my spine. Thank you for the post.
posted by Athanassiel at 1:12 AM on July 17, 2013


Great essay. Thanks. Coincidentally, I had my first look inside one of my dad's hives yesterday, but I wore a beekeeper suit. I'm not sure I would have been as trusting!
posted by knapah at 2:43 AM on July 17, 2013


Fantastic essay. Anything with bees in it has an extra dimension of goodness.

Even if I wasn’t consciously aware of it, I got the message.
This is what make me cry, it's just so insidious.
posted by arcticseal at 3:57 AM on July 17, 2013 [1 favorite]


Among the more concrete ramifications of this corruption of the imagination is that when the police suspect a black man or boy of having a gun, he becomes murderable: Murderable despite having earned advanced degrees or bought a cute house or written a couple of books of poetry. Murderable whether he’s an unarmed adult or a child riding a bike in the opposite direction. Murderable in the doorways of our houses. Murderable as we come home from the store. Murderable as we lie facedown on the ground in a subway station. Murderable the day before our weddings. Murderable, probably, in our gardens.

I can't begin to imagine how much this must weigh on people's minds everytime they step out of their front door.
posted by arcticseal at 4:42 AM on July 17, 2013 [2 favorites]


Thank you for posting this.
posted by MonkeyToes at 4:55 AM on July 17, 2013


Great stuff. Let me join the rest in thanking you for posting it.
posted by jquinby at 5:43 AM on July 17, 2013


Thank you.
posted by rtha at 6:16 AM on July 17, 2013


I love how most people here are just saying "thanks" so far - not discussing the writing or issues so much. It's like, with writing that good, what can you say?

I think, apart from being the best article on the internet I've read since I don't know how long, this is a good essay for certain people who don't "get" why there's so much upset about what's going on in Florida lately. Obviously a dyed-in-the-wool racist wouldn't even read it, but for those intelligent and open enough to do so, it could be transformative.

The only other thing I've read that opened my eyes so much to a different experience of western society than my own was Alex Haley's Autobiography of Malcolm X.
posted by iotic at 7:32 AM on July 17, 2013 [2 favorites]


That was a good read. It isn't easy digging up the times you've been treated that way, and also pulling in reminders of the times you've personally seen others treated that way, and adding in the cases you've heard about in the news, or from friends.
posted by cashman at 7:33 AM on July 17, 2013


I was not expecting to cry in my office this morning. But that was amazing.
posted by WidgetAlley at 8:34 AM on July 17, 2013


Ditto everyone else. Yes, yes, this was one of the best things I've read. I hope, really, really hope that we will be hearing more from him. I just bought his book "Bringing the Shovel Down" since it's available as an ebook ... though I'd much, much rather have a paper book for this (I just feel a far more urgent need to physically stroke the physical pages when it's poetry; I also felt like stroking the linked essay from this post. They should have sent a poet, indeed, and this time they did. And it tore me up. )

But Amazon UK doesn't carry this, or his other book, "Against Which"and ordering from the US is pretty spendy for me.

Thanks so much for the post.
posted by taz at 9:19 AM on July 17, 2013 [1 favorite]


Thanks for sharing this; a really affecting read. I don't have kids who are black (or, ok, of any shade), but the Trayvon Martin murder and subsequent Zimmerman case has often made me think concernedly for my friends and colleagues who do.
posted by threeants at 3:49 PM on July 17, 2013


This is really good.
posted by brundlefly at 5:01 PM on July 17, 2013


Thank god this guy is a writer.
Fuck.
posted by artof.mulata at 12:42 AM on July 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Thanks for the kind comments. I was blown away when I read this article and I'm so pleased I could share it here. Here's an interview that includes some of his poems, which touches on the same themes.
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:16 AM on July 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


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