21 Jun Carpe Diem Pt 2
*Kwame Ture formerly Stokely Carmicheal
So there I was, sitting at the front row for Afrikan Liberation Day which was well under way. I wished my Keynote was first so I could really enjoy the program that I helped organize. Representatives of the Harriet Tubman Organization and the Afrikan Union Region 6 in Toronto had already given their solidarity statements which were both powerful. I talked myself multiple times into believing that I wouldn’t be nervous… I played myself, it was there, that nervous feeling of not being able to know what could happen. I played out how my speech would sound multiple times mentally but nothing compares to the situation at hand. I had a million and one thoughts swimming in my head…
“There is more people then we expected!”
“I didn’t memorize my speech.”
“I don’t want to move outta this seat till I get called”
“I have to top the first 2 speakers, shiiiiiet they were good.
“Why can’t I stop fidgeting?”
“CAN I FUCKING GO ALREADY”
“I’m not going to top the first 2 speakers”
“Stick to the game plan, focus on what you practised”
“I want to eat but I don’t want to eat”
“Whatever happens just make sure your voice is strong…..”
I was finally called up by my fellow organizer and host of the night, the one who suggested I do the Keynote in the first place. She introduced me quite well and my moment of truth was here, that moment was felt when all eyes and ears fixated on me. At least 50 people in the room and that’s a lot of energy pointed at you at once. There is a weight that washes over you and it can affect posture without you realizing it. All the previous thinking came to a halt and the only thing to think about was delivering this speech coherently with a strong voice.
The microphone felt smaller then it looked but I held it like the spirits of all my Pan-Afrikan ancestars were concealed in it. When I started speaking, I felt I was fidgeting to much with my legs so I stopped it – the fidgeting not my speech. I felt frozen in that spot after but I let my body be because I had already started. The speech flowed, my voice stayed coherent and confident on what I was speaking on. I fumbled some words out of 3000 but recovered gracefully. I took my eyes of my paper when I could and took a few extra moments to find my line again when I looked back down. I didn’t panic, I just used my eyes silently to get back on track.
About 35 minutes went by and it was over. I survived, everyone clapped at the end and no one threw their shoe at me! It felt good after, my vibrations felt more frequent and I felt silly for feeling nervous about nothing. I was among my own people ready to receive this message from a fresh face. Nervousness or fear will always be a natural, it’s how your nerves, mind and body language react to it.
I wished I memorized the speech but it must be another battle for another time. Writing this speech really sharpened my pen, accepting it short notice was the perfect aggressive agent to make the magic happen. I had to do some light research in case I would need to back up some claims later. That took up more then enough time, so next time I know my writing production for a speech this size and give myself more time to practise and memorize it.
I wouldn’t change a thing about this experience, all these learning opportunities will increase my IQ as a future effective public speaker. My first speech but won’t be my last, this was my first step into in crafting myself as a leader in the Black Liberation movement. I don’t want to keep talking about how great our Ancestars are, they guide me yes but it’s still up to us to carry through and continue their work. We need to continue looking up to them but also look within ourselves as liberators and leaders. The same abilities and qualities we praise about them is the same qualities we possess.
This is the first part of my speech. Click the link and hit up my channel for the rest!
Here is a Soundcloud link : https://soundcloud.com/blackdollars-canada/2017-05-30-12-20-43-128kbps
Peace and Blessings