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Love letter to The Michigan Womyns Music Festival


2011 Love letter to the Michigan Womyns music festival!

Thank you for loving me, singing to me, showing me shooting stars and the Milky Way! Thank you for feeding me, caring for me at the womb, for dancing, strutting, communal showers and safe, late, late night walks in the woods, for sunrises and dear friends! For guiding me to set intentions which never fail to bring me back to myself once again, Thanks to all the performers who teach me herstory through their music, storytelling rituals, theater, comedy and performance art, Thank you Lisa Vogal for holding this space every year in the face of tragedy and endless challenges! A huuuuuge shout out to all the workers who build this space every year!!! Without it, I believe, I would still be a very sad and wounded womyn! Thanks to everyone for the healing!

The take away for 2011 - the 22-year struggle regarding who has the right to determine who is a womyn and who isn’t? I do not believe the MWMF claims to determine who is and who isn’t a woman. To me the MWMF claims to celebrate womyn born womyn, who grow up as womyn and live in the world as womyn; and in particular, lesbian womyn; for as we know, claiming to love just womyn is not politically correct, nor is it considered a contemporary perspective in this post deconstructionist world of queer theory academia.

As a bearded, butch lesbian womyn born womyn, I feel the need to express what the hate feels like if you are me on the land. A shout out to WBW! Do not glare at me in hate because you think you know what side of this imaginary line I am on, or am siding with. If you don’t have the courage to speak to me in this ”safe space” that you claim we are in, don’t hate on me, glare at me, or stare me down even after I smile at you! The same goes for trans woman and their supporters don’t hate on me for loving MICHFEST! If you are on the land with all your manly parts please keep them covered in common space! Exposing yourself as a form of activism inside the gates shows me a complete lack of understanding for the state of womyn in the world at large! Rape is used as a weapon of war on womyn and therefore speaks to the depth of its reach, regardless of how irrational you or trans- allies view the argument of trauma in relation to your penis!

I go to Michfest to be wholly myself to be my wbw lesbian self, who is in need of some serious healing after a year in the world of Patriarchy. Is it really anyone’s business if I’m out here celebrating and worshipping the gender known as female? I mean, really! I do not believe I am socially, politically or economically oppressing trans woman by attending the festival. So, please stop. It has been 22 years since the conflict exploded. 27 yrs for me, since I spoke to a trans woman at my very first Fest. Stop the hate people!!! Maybe it’s time for trans woman space. I call on all trans woman and allies to create space for trans woman so they can create safety, be loved-up, determine who they are for themselves. The hate projected at them on the land and off is palpable. It is clear, especially with the t-shirt wars this year, that neither side is feeling safe or cozy, and I can feel the pain from both sides.

In conclusion, my final take away. If a workshop has the word queer in it, assume it will be trans-inclusive. If you are out at the Twilight Zone, and come across an over- sharing moment, remember you choose to go to the Twilight Zone. There are no rules; there are just safe words. And, if you can’t respect festival intention, and still have your manly parts, keep them covered!!! If you take team colors or t-shirts, you will be required to play cooperative games with UU folks facilitating. I think it will go miles to healing our divides, in general, around race, class, and all man-made ‘isms’, and not just trans inclusion! A huge shout out to the fabulous Nedra Johnson for her show WANTED, an exploration of womyn who identify as wbw, and who appear masculine or butch, but do not identify as male. A big thank you to Queen for holding scared space. To Karen Williams for reminding me to not forget I’m white, and to put my check in the mail as soon as I get home. To Bitch and Billy Jo for the Ferron movie, and to Ferron for teaching me about tenderness and revolution with her words and music. To Karma Mayet Johnson for the incredible love story “Indigo, A Blues Opera”! To all who work their butts off to build this moment in time, to hold up the female, tell the story and remind us why we make this journey every year! You Rock the planet!!!! Thank You Thank you, thank you!!!
See you in August 2012, goddess willing!
oxox goddessboi