Thursday, April 26, 2012

Echo Book/DocuFilm Backstory: A Slave Ship Named Echo

Sometimes as writers and poets we feel things before the reasons for the feelings become apparent to us. This morning I found out that there was a slave ship (from past day African American slavery) that was named Echo*. Echo. Echo. Echo. The same exact as my Play, now Book and DocuFilm. I had no idea. No idea that there was a slave ship named Echo. I am completely floored. But it gives me some awareness of why Echo lives within me so strongly as well as some awareness of the "force" of some of the poetry that has flowed from my fingers.
Please find below a poem that I wrote awhile ago. I wrote it after I felt that my voice was being oppressed by a Pastor. But what flowed out was much deeper than that. I didn't understand what I wrote. it seemed to not match the situation. Yes, I felt oppressed but what flowed out was much deeper. I understand it now. I believe that the words in this poem are ones that my ancestors would have understood. My own situation had caused me to brush up against the spirit of the oppressed and subjugated tears of my very own ancestors. And a flood of emotions broke forth. May we catch their tears in our hearts. Caress them. And blow them back with love. Selah.

(Note: You can read more about the slave ship Echo here:

as of yet
the stones were forced
to cry out for her,
because the terror unveiled out of
her mouth's mournful yell remains
unheard. even in all its intensity
it is stilled and silenced
by the tentacles
of cowardice and greed.
an unsavory combination.

she was cradled by the
rough waves which discarded her
upon these shores, spitting her out.
until stooped over stood. as best she could.
straddling the docks of "founded upon liberty"
and the "the truth of the matter" cat o nine tails
that ripped open her flesh with
the whip of degradation, the noose of rape.

she watched as her legacy was torn and shredded
from the depths of her history.
(their shame).
so, there she wait,
peering into the face of the darkest of evil,
which posed as light. but smelled of putrid.
body put on display for a
thruppence. pence.
a penny for your thoughts on it all,
her life run amok,
signed and sealed over
by inhumanity’s hand,
and the signature of subjugation
It knows her name
disposed of by all


(The poetry piece As Of Yet was featured in the San Francisco production of the Theater performance Echo: A Poetic Journey into Justice. It also appears in my third poetry book titled Nothing Cool About Ten. As Of Yet, U S Copyright 2010 Regina Y. Evans)

Echo, Book/DocuFilm Backstory: She Spoke

I am putting together a storyboard for my Book/DocuFilm Echo. I had a meeting last week with a really amazing filmmaker and his advice to me was to have something visual to show people as I am putting together my team. I thought that it was an amazing idea. I decided to do a picture storyboard with poetic words. I began my hunt.

Today I came across this picture of this slave women
(Source: I have seen it before but today it "hit" me in a new way. The vile muzzle device was used when slaves were accused of insubordination or eating more than their allotment of food. The device locked the mouth so tightly that the slave could not speak. 

How do we stop the growth of twisted roots of pervasive generational evil from bubbling up and sending out dark echos if we are not willing to confront the brutality of our past, grasp it, level it back into the blood soaked earth, listen compassionately to its blistered screams, acknowledge it in love, soothe it in unified sorrow and understanding, and restore it into the fullness of what it was ...always meant to be. so long ago. we cannot. its just that simple. problems die when the root is nor more. and the root of trafficking today greatly lies within the hidden sorrow of past day slavery. the notion of dealing with such a sorrow is for us all. all colors. all creeds. all races. we are connected. that is truth.

Sometimes Echo possesses me. When I see pictures like this I understand the force of the flow of the story of Echo even more. Past Day African American Slavery and Sex Trafficking/Human Trafficking (what we are experiencing now in our very own nation many decadesupondecades later) are a reflective mirror of one another. Think about it....long and hard. Greed, subjugation, family displacement, rape, brutalization, oppression. Different "plantation". Same evil brew. Same. Same.

Yes. Think. Selah....
And the souls of her eyes spoke: "Tell my story. tell. my. story." Let it be so.

Echo: A Poetic Journey into Justice. The DocuFilm. Coming 2013 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Backstory: "Echo" Film Shoot and Lotus Flowers

today we are heading out for the film shoot. it seems like a very normal day. indeed. i went to bed last night not having a clue about how to shoot the ending. the rest i had a very clear picture sitting steadfast in my soul, heart and mind. I saw it all so clearly...except the ending. and this morning it "popped" in my head so i am pleased. i won't give any details of the road map for the film...except to say this: it is simple. everything about it is simple. nothing fancy. just the truth about the simplicity of hope. a small thing with a big impact.

and what of lotus flowers? they are lovely. simple. simply look:

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Amenhotep: The peace of amen

looking for the not beigebland sameness but the same ness sort that holds hands with its neighbor and marvels at what is acknowledged in the reflection of mirrored eyes. you see me. i see you. though on a different mountain top, in an opposite riverflow or touching the sky from the seats of valleyway and valeeway .  i've been walking around the middlesides of a conundrum million crossroads of difference. i am left standing at the concentric center method of poetry. poetry is lovelife.

"The Great Hymn to the Aten is an ancient Egyptian hymn to the sun god Aten. It is attributed to Pharaoh Akhenaten, who attempted to convert Egypt to monotheism, with Aten being the only god. It was found, in its most complete form, in the tomb of Ay in the rock tombs at Amarna (ancient Akhet-Aten, the city Akhenaten founded). The hymn gives us a glimpse of the artistic outpouring of the Amarna period.

In his book Reflections on the Psalms, C.S. Lewis compared the Hymn to the Psalms of the Judaeo-Christian canon." (Wikipedia)

How manifold it is, what thou hast made!
They are hidden from the face (of man).
O sole god, like whom there is no other!
Thou didst create the world according to thy desire,
Whilst thou wert alone: All men, cattle, and wild beasts,
Whatever is on earth, going upon (its) feet,
And what is on high, flying with its wings.

The countries of Syria and Nubia, the land of Egypt,
Thou settest every man in his place,
Thou suppliest their necessities:
Everyone has his food, and his time of life is reckoned.
Their tongues are separate in speech,
And their natures as well;
Their skins are distinguished,
As thou distinguishest the foreign peoples.
Thou makest a Nile in the underworld,
Thou bringest forth as thou desirest
To maintain the people (of Egypt)
According as thou madest them for thyself,
The lord of all of them, wearying (himself) with them,
The lord of every land, rising for them,
The Aton of the day, great of majesty.
(read more about Amenhotep here:

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

je ne suis pas igual

i am not the same
neither is my blog
next phase
around the inbetween
and climbing down
the back
right into the center


Monday, April 2, 2012

Mother Wisdom

I had lunch with my Mom today (we do this weekly at our fav restaurants around town) and I asked her for her best advice and wisdom for someone like me who is going into management. She said:

"Well, being a good manager is sometimes the difference between being a hard task master and a fool. A hard task master will bring out the best in their workers and allow them to shine. They guide them into being the best that they can be. A hard task master is someone that will impart knowledge and train their workers...and let them "fly" even if it means that they will leave and go onto a better job. A hard task master want workers to be in a position that they have learned enough so that they can "fly" in their career and do an extraordinary job. They also are adept at making workers feel appreciated and a valued part of the team.

A fool will operate from the principle of black and white, they will take credit for their workers hard work, they don't help their workers to become stars, they will be angry and vindictive if their workers leave for greener pastures, they are selfish and want all the glory for themselves. In many ways they are just...silly. You see, a fool is just that...a fool."

And well...that was great advice. My Mom has a Doctorate in Education with an emphasis in Organizational Behavior. I thought her advice would be more, well, stilted. As I interpret her means that every human desires to feel wanted and needed. Appreciated. And a part of the team. It is each of our responsibility to help others shine. So that their giftings can be borne out. I loved her advice. My Mom has been a mentor to many successful individuals. As for me, I think that I will take her advice as I walk the management terrain.

The Backstory: From Echo to Our Letters and back to Echo

Okay! I have decided to document the back story of the making of my film short (you can follow along here on my blog). I did not do this when I was writing Echo The Play. It is a regret (somewhat..) because in many ways the back story of Echo is a story in and of itself. I learned many things. And I grew in many ways.

So, join me as I journey. Again. Firstly, I have decided to change the whole title. from Echo to Our Letters. And I have changed the whole scope, in fact. Our Letters will have some elements of Echo but the storyline will be one of hope. With Echo I was more concerned about bringing awareness to the issue of sex trafficking. With Our Letters I am more concerned with bringing out and highlighting the elements of hope and love.

Why? because as I thought about my own journey, as a woman, what helped me to live where those people around me who completely just loved me. Faults and all. Such things are the truth of beauty. And unhindered beauty leads us to the feet of freedom.

For those of you just reading about the news of echo: The DocuFilm,  I am bringing on board, fingers crossed,  a group of talented young students from the Academy of Arts (in San Francisco) for the actually making of the film. Also, my young friend Victorie will be featured in the film. She is a young girl of 19 years old, bright eyed and lovely. She has a dream of being an actor. She is filled with faith and innocence. And strength.

Our Letters is a short film that will completely be a labor of love for me. I am making it from the heart space of God as my single audience member. For me this is necessary. I do not want to carry the burden of thinking about whether people will like it. I did that with Echo. It was a heavy burden. And carrying such a weight stunts my creativity. I just want to make this film from my good heart. And that heart is concerned with whether or not the eternal God is smiling upon it.

And also, for myself personally, creating the short film from that stance allows me to enjoy my own life. I am blessed enough to have an amazing new job and I will be focusing upon it in a serious way! My goal with my new job is to learn how to be an extraordinary manager. And that requires effort, commitment and a lot of hard work (I'm in!). Also, there are things that I want to see, places that I would like to visit, relationships that I want to build. It is hard doing such things when the heart is sitting in the center of creative strife. Our Letters will be created from a more relaxed and peace-filled heart.

The film short will be a collaborative effort. It won't be very long. But, I am sure that it will be powerful. I say this because messages of hope and love are, perhaps, the most powerful ones known to mankind.

God is love.

Note: so today (april 6th, 2012) we had our first shooting and I changed the name, again, back to Echo. Why? because of the legacy and history. alot went into the making of the play. i learned many lessons and made many beautiful mistakes. so i decided to honor it all and stand upon the shoulders of the play. the film will still be very different but will carry the heart of Echo...but with a bigger dose of hope. i am pleased. selah....


"May today there be peace within. May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others. May you use the gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. May you be content with yourself just the way you are. Let this knowledge settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of us." – Mother Teresa