I’ve been thinking a lot about this speech a lot lately. I don’t want to co-opt her brilliant language about breaking down racism and xenophobia for my own purposes, and yet I feel like the work we are doing now to bring a new reality to birth during this time of waiting and change is part of the same story. We are cocooning in our home-wombs, envisioning an After that will succeed for everyone in ways that the Before could only dream of.
I don’t think we are anywhere near transition in the story we are birthing. I think we have a long way to go. This labor is more like my labors were, long and protracted, going through cycles of intense and near-transitional waves of desire to push before settling back into the rocking rhythms of preparatory contractions. Rise and fall. Breathe.
What would happen to the world if we would all see ourselves as Midwives of the Moment? If we were all to use this time to envision, to re-orient, to wake up a little, to find ways to articulate the dream of the After?
I want my life in the After to continue to include the baking of bread.
I want our lives in the After to be like those first weeks of sheltering in place, when Mutual Aid was the word of the day. Remember that, before we started fighting about personal liberties?
I want our lives in the After to include safety nets, like health care.
I want our lives in the After to recognize the people who really make things happen. Not the billionaires, but the Workers.
What do you want to see in the After?
1. The brisk springy air flowing in the screen door. It’s travel-weather, although I am not traveling.
2. Envisioning a more just and humane future.
3. The people who keep the world running: the workers.
4. Anticipating summer.
5. Making things.
May we walk in Beauty!
“People think that stories are shaped by people. In fact, it’s the other way around.”
― Terry Pratchett
“The historian deals with the past, but the true storyteller works with the future. You can tell the strength of an age by the imaginative truth-grasping vigour of its storytellers. Stories are matrices of thought. They are patterns formed in the mind. They weave their effect on the future. To be a storyteller is to work with, to weave with, the material of time itself.” —Ben Okri (The Mystery Feast)
“Love trumps dogma every time.” —Vincent Harding
“Saruman believes it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. It is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love. Why Bilbo Baggins? Perhaps because I am afraid, and he gives me courage.” ―Gandalf, (Peter Jackson)
“Maturity is the ability to live joyfully in an imperfect world.” —Richard Rohr
“Hey, even Santa Claus believes in you!”
—Floyd and Janis, The Electric Mayhem