As a black woman, or a dark woman or a mixed/mulatto woman or whatever I am, I feel both affinity, repulsion, jealousy and love towards Kali. Raised to only know the goddesses of the greek myths they always seem to have blonde or brown hair and milky white skin.
They didn't represent me. They had their little indiscretions, their vanities, but ferocious, I don't know, maybe only Hera (and that because of an unfaithful husband).
But, now I have met Kali. I've seen her before but I didn't pay much attention to her. I remember being at the Huntington Museum in the basement with all the India Art around me with my friend Kathleen, years ago, before my love affair began with yoga. We both agreed that this India stuff was complicated and the gods and goddesses seemed ferocious.And now, what? I love Kali, her tongue wagging out aka Michael Jordan with his "try to mess with me" expression.
I have experienced my father's death and understand an attraction to the cremation grounds. I could easily take his jar of ashes and throw them all over me in wild sadness.
Her unruly hair is like mine, an old friend said my crazy curly hair was an expression of all the mad ideas in my mind. But, I still I do try to tame my hair to fit in more with society. I hold back my rage and my dissatisfaction with this racist classist sexist society. Kali doesn't do that. I try to smoothe the hair down and lower my voice, and put make up on, and try to be pretty, and try not make too many waves.
She is unconcerned about all those things. She could care less!
She stands on her lover making sure everyone knows she has the power. Not worrying about if people will think he is pussy whipped. Not worrying that she is in charge.
What I am so jealous of is that she is so unapologetic. She doesn't try to hold herself back or make herself smaller as I do because I don't want to stand out too much. She is not worried about being called an "angry black woman." She is not trying to assimilate as I have for years. She doesn't hear a voice that says "If I act right, maybe no one will notice that I am different."
So Kali, love, jealous, affinity, repulsion are my gifts to you.