It is nearly incomprehensible to wake up this morning and see news of another police shooting of a Black man. Especially in Minneapolis at this time of the trial of Derek Chauvin.
This morning my friend Avis Wanda McClinton wrote to me, and said “I can’t breathe”. Then on a phone call about the following, she told me she was afraid to even get in her car. She has had her own traumatic experiences with police.
In this QuakerSpeak video Avis Wanda tells the story of her Friends Victory Garden. Following that she tells who each garden box honours. For each she tells what is said… and what is left unsaid… At the end is a photo of the greenhouse that Avis Wanda says is dedicated to the Africans who died on the slave ships carrying them to the Americas on the middle passage. To honour those whose names are unknown.
“I just couldn’t sit in my house and feel scared and powerless,” Avis Wanda McClinton says, thinking back to the early months of the pandemic. “There’s always something to do, you know? I’m a child of God. He gave me these beautiful hands and gave me this big heart, and I know how to grow food.” So that’s what she did.
“When you’re farming, it’s a solitary thing,” Avis Wanda reflects. “Down on my knees, preparing the beds for the plants, I just talked to God as I worked the earth, told him my fears and my worries and what I hope for the future.”
Avis Wanda says this greenhouse is dedicated to the Africans who died on the slave ships carrying them to the Americas on the middle passage. To those whose names are unknown.