Category Archives: Asenath

Asenath and the Origin of Nappy Hair

Fifty two days (excluding Saturdays) of 52 excerpts from 52 chapters

Asenath and the Origin of Nappy Hair

11/3/2014 From Chapter 1: Look Homeward, Angel

It is cool and deep here. I lean out from my shelf and look at you, curious. I see the big puffs of hair on both sides of your head. Can you hear me? What do you call your hair? It’s so puffy and full. Nappy? It’s the nappiest hair in the world you say? I’m glad you can hear me and answer my questions. Eleven years old and your name is Shirah Shulamit Ojero. My name is John Milton.

Cluster 2: Your Heaven THE Argument

Asenath and the Origin of Nappy Hair

Excerpt from Chapter 8: THE Argument

“Don’t ask ‘What is spaghetti,’ ask, ‘What is a Graduate Student?’ Here is the prophecy.”

“A Graduate Student will be a being who lives on spaghetti with ramen sauce, the kind with MSG.”

“Further, Graduate Students cannot be stopped.

“You can renovate their libraries from under them.

“You can spill coffee on their notebooks.

“You can demagnetize their disks.

“You can lay them low with mono.

“You can infest their apartments with locusts and their books with silverfish.

“A Graduate Student will be able to scrape under the collar of the peanut butter jar for the last bit of peanut butter.

Cluster 2: Your Heaven: Angel Square

Asenath and The Origin of Nappy Hair

Excerpt from Chapter 7: Angel Square

Of all the angels in heaven, Asenath, you are the most perverse, because you actually want to stay. Here we are on another bright Heavenly morning, well, you know what I mean, our light here can be so provoking — so what if we call it morning, what’s wrong with that? Yes, I know it’s afternoon, but these afternoons might as well be mornings. Always bright. Always Heavenly. And we angels hovering around in Boylston Hall to watch you and the Dean.

John Milton Remembers

Excerpt from Chapter 6

In Asenath and the Origin of Nappy Hair, the poet John Milton remembers meeting my character, Shirah Shulamit, “How I remember our walk, you and I, hand in hand, with lingering steps and slow, from the Carnegie Library at Seventh and K, the H Street bus, Benning Road, across the Anacostia River, Kenilworth Avenue to Mayfair Mansions and Eastland Gardens and the Garden of Converging Paths in Kenilworth and then uptown to your family’s new house in the Takoma neighborhood of Washington, DC.