Last Night, Hope Was Born

November 5, 2008



The incoming first family of the United States of America. Tears stream down my face, with happiness. I am a mess! and I know I am not alone. We love them already, and our relationship has only just begun. We are on the verge of an unprecedented leap into a field of pure possibility, and that was probably inevitable, one way or the other. Some might call it free fall, sure enough. But still...

Because Barack Obama will be in the White House, everything will be different. We now stand a chance. As I listened to him speak last night, utterly transfixed, this thought dawned on me: “We have a leader.” And, as I dare say time will show, a genuinely remarkable one.

My heart is full. For this morning, joy is enough; I will not aspire to eloquence. For that I will turn to our great Maya Angelou, with the poem delivered by her back in January of 1993 on the occasion of President Clinton’s inauguration.

Here follow parts of it:

Lift up your eyes upon
The day breaking for you.

Give birth again
To the dream.

Women, children, men,
Take it into the palms of your hands.

Mold it into the shape of your most
Private need. Sculpt it into
The image of your most public self.
Lift up your hearts
Each new hour holds new chances
For new beginnings.

Do not be wedded forever
To fear, yoked eternally
To brutishness.

The horizon leans forward,
Offering you space to place new steps of change.
Here, on the pulse of this fine day
You may have the courage
To look up and out upon me, the
Rock, the River, the Tree, your country…

Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.


God bless Barack and Michelle as they step forward, carrying our hearts and fragile hope with them. God, keep them safe and always in your hands.

And help us open up our hearts as we’ve not been able in a long, long time, most especially to one another here at home. May our very first act be to consciously reach out a hand of sincere friendship and honest compassion to each and every one of our fellow Americans, and may we consistently keep on doing so. We are each and every one of us essential. Remember this absolute truth, please, and keep it with you (for it is an enriching thing):

None of us can ever really know which singular soul will rise up to help us or those we love when most needed, or somehow assume a leadership role, smaller or larger, and lift up the country, or lead us toward some remarkable breakthrough. That being the case, why allow our petty or well-worn assumptions to silently slam shut such doors of possibility?

Freedom is Not a Privilege 1998 P. Crockett

In time, all will come to understand that, as of last night, all Americans are part of, and take a personal stake in, a huge victory.

Many good people have been made afraid of the very idea of President Obama. This is not their fault. Let us not judge them, nor keep on taking the bait of continued shadow boxing. We need not agree. But we all thrive with respect, and each want to be heard and understood. Just now, on this beautiful morning, I feel like there is all the room in the world for all of us. And, we are all needed.

The huge and often dark lessons of the last eight years cannot and should not be forgotten, it is true. But today, thank God!, is a new day. Let us embrace it, eyes, heart, and arms wide open. To one another, to the world.

The time is now. It is all just beginning.

Let’s make it good.

Amen.

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Last Night, Hope Was Born

November 5, 2008



The incoming first family of the United States of America. Tears stream down my face, with happiness. I am a mess! and I know I am not alone. We love them already, and our relationship has only just begun. We are on the verge of an unprecedented leap into a field of pure possibility, and that was probably inevitable, one way or the other. Some might call it free fall, sure enough. But still...

Because Barack Obama will be in the White House, everything will be different. We now stand a chance. As I listened to him speak last night, utterly transfixed, this thought dawned on me: “We have a leader.” And, as I dare say time will show, a genuinely remarkable one.

My heart is full. For this morning, joy is enough; I will not aspire to eloquence. For that I will turn to our great Maya Angelou, with the poem delivered by her back in January of 1993 on the occasion of President Clinton’s inauguration.

Here follow parts of it:

Lift up your eyes upon
The day breaking for you.

Give birth again
To the dream.

Women, children, men,
Take it into the palms of your hands.

Mold it into the shape of your most
Private need. Sculpt it into
The image of your most public self.
Lift up your hearts
Each new hour holds new chances
For new beginnings.

Do not be wedded forever
To fear, yoked eternally
To brutishness.

The horizon leans forward,
Offering you space to place new steps of change.
Here, on the pulse of this fine day
You may have the courage
To look up and out upon me, the
Rock, the River, the Tree, your country…

Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.


God bless Barack and Michelle as they step forward, carrying our hearts and fragile hope with them. God, keep them safe and always in your hands.

And help us open up our hearts as we’ve not been able in a long, long time, most especially to one another here at home. May our very first act be to consciously reach out a hand of sincere friendship and honest compassion to each and every one of our fellow Americans, and may we consistently keep on doing so. We are each and every one of us essential. Remember this absolute truth, please, and keep it with you (for it is an enriching thing):

None of us can ever really know which singular soul will rise up to help us or those we love when most needed, or somehow assume a leadership role, smaller or larger, and lift up the country, or lead us toward some remarkable breakthrough. That being the case, why allow our petty or well-worn assumptions to silently slam shut such doors of possibility?

Freedom is Not a Privilege 1998 P. Crockett

In time, all will come to understand that, as of last night, all Americans are part of, and take a personal stake in, a huge victory.

Many good people have been made afraid of the very idea of President Obama. This is not their fault. Let us not judge them, nor keep on taking the bait of continued shadow boxing. We need not agree. But we all thrive with respect, and each want to be heard and understood. Just now, on this beautiful morning, I feel like there is all the room in the world for all of us. And, we are all needed.

The huge and often dark lessons of the last eight years cannot and should not be forgotten, it is true. But today, thank God!, is a new day. Let us embrace it, eyes, heart, and arms wide open. To one another, to the world.

The time is now. It is all just beginning.

Let’s make it good.

Amen.


A Wonderful Picture Book, Right on Time

October 17, 2008


From Different is Special Denise Molini


Those people are DIFFERENT!” Hmm, love them or kill them? Foolish though the question may sound, this is is no joke.

My friend Denise Gibel Molini has written, illustrated, and posted online a wonderful picture book called Different is Special. Like Obama, she is the child of an interracial marriage. Her father was Afro-Cuban, and her mother white and Jewish. She found herself suspect by both “groups,” and fully welcome in neither. She wants a better world for her children. For herself. Her friends, even “enemies.” She wants a better world.

With Richard and Evelynn

The book is posted on her web log, The Power of Being. Please take a look: http://www.thepowerofbeing.net/2008/10/08/different-is-special/

Denise is one special soul, and a great friend. I wrote of her a while back, at http://www.growingintothemystery.com/2008/02/meet-my-dear-friend-denise.html . She is a “sensitive” who feels things deeply, and who loves people. So, she is suffering.

But agony is always a question calling for the answer of redemption, and Denise keeps doing what she can to make the world a little less hateful and hate-filled place. She has another blog as well, called The Growing Field, in which she continues to slug away at similar themes. Take a look, for example, at http://the-growing-field.blogspot.com/2008/01/value-of-man.html


Why do I feel Different is Special to be especially timely? Consider the following mailing I received from the G.O.P. a couple of weeks ago, probably because I live in generally conservative (and pro-Republican) Little Havana. This REALLY bothered me. Actually (and I have to say exactly this, unfortunately) made me want to projectile vomit:


Be American. Be afraid. Be very afraid. Vote Republican.

What exactly are the many messages at play in this ad? Probably very few that its publishers would “cop” to, but it’s clear that its essential purpose is to stir up fear amongst the people, by any means necessary, and to somehow throw “into the mix” a message that different is dangerous.

It’s all so tiresome. Exactly how stupid does the Republican party believe us to be? Just a little more than we actually are, I believe. They will see, come November.

I am ready for a change that means something, and I am a proud American and want to be prouder still. And I am not alone.

Please tell your friends about Denise’s book!!


A Wonderful Picture Book, Right on Time

October 17, 2008


From Different is Special Denise Molini


Those people are DIFFERENT!” Hmm, love them or kill them? Foolish though the question may sound, this is is no joke.

My friend Denise Gibel Molini has written, illustrated, and posted online a wonderful picture book called Different is Special. Like Obama, she is the child of an interracial marriage. Her father was Afro-Cuban, and her mother white and Jewish. She found herself suspect by both “groups,” and fully welcome in neither. She wants a better world for her children. For herself. Her friends, even “enemies.” She wants a better world.

With Richard and Evelynn

The book is posted on her web log, The Power of Being. Please take a look: http://www.thepowerofbeing.net/2008/10/08/different-is-special/

Denise is one special soul, and a great friend. I wrote of her a while back, at http://www.growingintothemystery.com/2008/02/meet-my-dear-friend-denise.html . She is a “sensitive” who feels things deeply, and who loves people. So, she is suffering.

But agony is always a question calling for the answer of redemption, and Denise keeps doing what she can to make the world a little less hateful and hate-filled place. She has another blog as well, called The Growing Field, in which she continues to slug away at similar themes. Take a look, for example, at http://the-growing-field.blogspot.com/2008/01/value-of-man.html


Why do I feel Different is Special to be especially timely? Consider the following mailing I received from the G.O.P. a couple of weeks ago, probably because I live in generally conservative (and pro-Republican) Little Havana. This REALLY bothered me. Actually (and I have to say exactly this, unfortunately) made me want to projectile vomit:


Be American. Be afraid. Be very afraid. Vote Republican.

What exactly are the many messages at play in this ad? Probably very few that its publishers would “cop” to, but it’s clear that its essential purpose is to stir up fear amongst the people, by any means necessary, and to somehow throw “into the mix” a message that different is dangerous.

It’s all so tiresome. Exactly how stupid does the Republican party believe us to be? Just a little more than we actually are, I believe. They will see, come November.

I am ready for a change that means something, and I am a proud American and want to be prouder still. And I am not alone.

Please tell your friends about Denise’s book!!


What is an "Old Soul"? Look.

October 14, 2008


Have
you heard the term “old soul?” Does the phrase make any sense at all to you, or might its meaning be obvious? Have you ever looked into a baby’s eyes and been stunned to see them not only looking back into yours, but seeing, and in a special way? Have you ever heard little ones come out with such wisdom, or speak with such a voice of experience, that you are left scratching your head?

Let’s not try to figure it out, just now. In truth, such people (and they can show up anywhere, and in any number of forms) are most usually the greatest kind of gift to the rest of us, no matter what we might call them. So let’s just enjoy and be grateful for the mystery. It is a fine and powerful one.

If you’ve ever wondered what an old soul might look like, you need look no further. Just give Mr. Dalton Sherman, this fifth grader from Dallas, Texas, a few minutes of your attention.

Thank you, Lorraine, for sending it on.


What is an "Old Soul"? Look.

October 14, 2008


Have
you heard the term “old soul?” Does the phrase make any sense at all to you, or might its meaning be obvious? Have you ever looked into a baby’s eyes and been stunned to see them not only looking back into yours, but seeing, and in a special way? Have you ever heard little ones come out with such wisdom, or speak with such a voice of experience, that you are left scratching your head?

Let’s not try to figure it out, just now. In truth, such people (and they can show up anywhere, and in any number of forms) are most usually the greatest kind of gift to the rest of us, no matter what we might call them. So let’s just enjoy and be grateful for the mystery. It is a fine and powerful one.

If you’ve ever wondered what an old soul might look like, you need look no further. Just give Mr. Dalton Sherman, this fifth grader from Dallas, Texas, a few minutes of your attention.

Thank you, Lorraine, for sending it on.