A letter to the Black body

Wednesday, April 10, 2019 - 10:58pm

Blackbody symbolism

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Courtesy of Alexander Andrews via Unsplash

I’ve always wondered if a woman’s Blackness will be remembered, or if our importance, impact and beauty will fade. Sometimes, I feel I allow my mind to dabble in what-if’s and what society thinks rather than focusing on the beauty of my Blackness, and the strength of my Black body. After self-reflection, I feel like I have finally come up with a way to really understand and appreciate my Blackness.

I started searching online for things like Blackness, Black love quotes — typical things. But it wasn’t until my thoughts lead me to type in “Blackbody,” that I found something interesting, something that just latched on to me and made me feel good. What I found was a little something called Rayleigh-Jeans Law. If you’re into science, this concept may not be new to you, but it was fascinating to me. The law mentioned that a “Black body” is an idealized object that can absorb and emit all frequencies and that it is a radiator that generates and absorbs energy of all electromagnetic wavelengths. Based on that information, I’d say an object that is considered a black body is quite powerful.

Taking Rayleigh-Jeans Law into my own deeper thinking, I started relating it to the blackbody that takes on human form. Similar to the black body that the law speaks of, I’d say the human Black body is quite powerful and amazing too. But why? When I asked myself this question, it was hard to give a specific answer. Then, I thought of everything. What makes the Black body powerful is that in the face of trauma and hardships, the body yearns to heal and repair, whether it repairs itself or receives help. The body refuses to shut down and become limp when confronted with negative power. The Black body absorbs energy and emits energy. If I could fathom a word that could truly emphasize the importance of the Black body, I would relate it to a vessel. This body, my body, has a skin that shelters it with strength, and although this body and this skin may appear tough to the world, there is a smaller world within the Black body. This world within is soft and delicate with wounds that are not so easy to repair.

When thinking of all that I learned from Rayleigh-Jeans Law, the last thing that came to mind was when Malcolm X unforgettably said, “The Black Woman is the most disrespected woman on the planet.”

To my fellow Black women, with beautiful black bodies, I want to respect you, I want to respect me. I hope that the strength of our energy is so bright, that it becomes more than enough. So please, do not just take Rayleigh Jeans Law as science. It is much more. Take it as a metaphor for your strength, your Black girl magic and your unconditional loving heart. I want your black body to emit energy and absorb energy that is good for you, energy that loves you and respects you. Allow your Black body to be exclusive to what pours in, while your love is still unconditional and inclusive to all diverse beautiful bodies.

I will finally say, our bodies are soft, smooth and rich like the feeling of oil against the skin. We have the ability to heal with voices as soft as honey, but a tone as powerful and wild like fire. This is a reminder that your Black body is a beautiful vessel in all that it is, and all that it is becoming.