Image Credit: Houston Conwill’s The Open Secret, 1986, MTA Permanent Art
Welcome to 2021! The world continues to be in crisis, but in every crisis, there is opportunity. This year, I am starting a new series on my blog and in my general life called KWhole Apoethecary that explores health and wellness from a Black-centered, Queens/NYC-based, integrative approach, including looking at self-care, social care/medicine, mental health, physical health, environmental health, spiritual health, and mythic/art/storytelling therapy.
First, the meaning behind the name KWhole Apoethecary. KWhole is a word inspired by other words I have come across in my life. My parents are from the Caribbean and they speak various forms of Creole. Sometimes Creole is spelled in different ways; for example in Dominica, where my father is from, it is spelled Kwéyól. Creole’s etymology is supposedly related to words like creation, griot, grow and the Greek goddess of agriculture, Ceres (who’s name sounds similar to mine), as well as other etymologies that have to do with the head, mind, hearth and earth material that can fuel fire or is made from fire. Additionally, the etymology of the word Whole shows that its original form had a “k” sound in front of it. Finally, the Swahili word Kweli, means truth. Thus, I gave this project the name KWhole.
As for Apoethecary, the word apothecary means a storehouse for medicines and herbs. So, I want this project to be a storehouse of knowledges or poetics that I am calling “rescriptions” (Rx’s), or writing that returns us to the core of ourselves. Think of this as a kind of diary as I explore these topics, and I will post a rescription bi-weekly. I hope for this project to evolve into other projects, so stay tuned for what it will bring. Thank you for joining me on this new journey.