Author: Danielle Pacifico-Cogan

I help people and organizations solve their problems, tell their stories, and connect with their communities.

Links For The Voracious

This edition of Links For The Voracious is about women who made history, attempts to deny history, and making sense of the past in art and life.

Gloria Richardson could not tolerate the dehumanizing terror of second-class citizenship, so she organized. Her work to end segregation on Maryland’s Eastern Shore helped transform the nation. Ms. Richardson died at the age of 99 on July 15. May her memory be a blessing and may she long be remembered by those who hunger for justice. 

When Ida B. Wells was born into slavery on July 16, 1862, the trajectory of her future was beyond imagination. Ms. Barnett became the moral compass of a nation unwilling to live up to its own ideals. 

In Mary Wang’s Miscellaneous Files series for Guernica, artists share the references and ideas that shape their work. 

Photographer Carol Highsmith is traveling across the country documenting the grand diversity of American places. She’s donating all the photographs (60,000 so far) copyright-free to the Library of Congress. 

Nothing good comes from trying to erase history.

Boiling absurdity down to its ridiculously contradictory essence. Making a way out of no way. Laughing to keep from crying and sometimes doing both because that’s the only way to survive. Professor Danielle Fuentes Morgan explores Black satire in the 21st century.


Writer Scott Hoshida’s short story “To Move is To Hope” in The Broadkill Review.

Toni Morrison had enduring friendships with Angela Davis and Fran Lebowitz. That’s range.

Angela Davis on Toni Morrison: “I have always been impressed by her ability to be so focused and to inhabit the universe of her writing while not neglecting the universe that involves the rest of us.”

Fran Lebowitz on Toni Morrison: “People who aren’t in a constant state of fury aren’t paying attention. But Toni was paying attention. She was simply above it rather than swamped by it. I don’t know how you do this, because I cannot do this. People use the word compassionate a lot, and I don’t know many people who really are. Toni was. And forgiving. She was forgiving.”

In honor of Lucille Clifton’s birthday

won’t you celebrate with me 

By Lucille Clifton

won’t you celebrate with me
what i have shaped into
a kind of life? i had no model.
born in babylon
both nonwhite and woman
what did i see to be except myself?
i made it up
here on this bridge between
starshine and clay,
my one hand holding tight
my other hand; come celebrate
with me that everyday
something has tried to kill me
and has failed.

Clouds

I spend a lot of time looking at clouds. They’re beautiful and captivating. Their shapes, colors, and textures offer a universe of gorgeous possibilities. A cloud is a cloud is a cloud. Unless it’s a mermaid or an ice cream cone or whatever else comes to mind. Clouds tease and spark the imagination. They can be whatever someone wants them to be.

Gwendolyn Brooks’ reflection on clouds. Ebony magazine, 1968.
Source: Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

NASA describes a cloud as “a mass of water drops or ice crystals suspended in the atmosphere.” Clouds also provide a celestial guide for interpreting our experiences. Situations can be like the images we see in clouds, not necessarily what they seem. A cloud can look like a dog with a stick in its mouth one second and the shape of Tennessee the next. A sure thing can transform into something unexpected in a matter of minutes. Change happens. Looking to the sky can help put things in perspective.

5 Songs For The End of The Week

Joan Armatrading

“First of all, I was born to write. It’s why I’m on this Earth. Secondly, I love doing it. I would never stop doing it. I just so love writing that I can’t imagine doing anything else. So I’m constantly aware of everything that’s around me – ready to absorb it and maybe get some inspiration from it.”

-Joan Armatrading

Links For The Voracious

So be curious, be adventurous, be tenacious, and you cannot be intimidated by the answer “no.”

-Bevy Smith

A group of gay activists reflect on their revolutionary 1970 road trip to rally gay people to attend the Revolutionary People’s Constitutional Convention in Washington, D.C. organized by the Black Panther Party.

“Then I felt around, and I realized there was no teeth and I had felt, really, no great pain,” he said. “And then I realized, ‘Oh my God, I’m in a whale’s mouth. I’m in a whale’s mouth, and he’s trying to swallow me.” -Lobster diver Michael Packard describes being swallowed by a humpback whale off the coast of Provincetown, Massachusetts

A Brutally Honest History of Latinos in Hollywood.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar on the influence and impact of Black athletes on racial equality.

We Need Diverse Books is no longer using the term “#OwnVoices.” Here’s why.

Do you want to hear from Black design and technology experts? The Tech Wrap Queen is the podcast for you.

Summer salad season is here.

5 Songs For The End of The Week

Source: Verzuz TV

In this special edition of 5 Songs, it’s a celebration of the birthdays of Patti LaBelle (May 25) and Gladys Knight (May 28). The two living legends have a combined 120 plus years of experience in show business. They are standard bearers of the unmatched skill and discipline Black performers brought to the stage across musical genres that shaped the last 60 years of American popular music. 

The first iteration of Gladys Knight and the Pips started when Gladys Knight was eight years old. Patti LaBelle made her Apollo Theater debut with The Blue Belles in 1962 at the age of 18.

“Music is my life. That’s what I do, not for a living, but for a life.”

-Patti LaBelle

“Soul music is really in essence music that touches the inner spirit, that core.”

-Gladys Knight

Links For The Voracious

NPR’s Audie Cornish breaks down getting over imposter syndrome and knowing when to stop and take care of yourself.

Photographer Tommy Kha on making the work you want to create and not succumbing to the limits of other people’s imaginations.

What Black critics have to say is essential for expanding our understanding of the arts.

“People tend to forget that words are scripture. Life and death lies in the tongue, and I wanted to create something that could uplift.” Costume director Marci Rodgers describing the inspiration for writing her children’s book “MaJaRa’s Dream” during the chaos and pain of 2020.

Everybody loves The Linda Lindas and they just signed a record deal with Epitaph Records. Congratulations, Lindas! 👍🏿 Check out the band at the Los Angeles Public Library TEENtastic Tuesdays: AAPI Heritage Month Kick-off.