and away she goes

perfect life-change music – beck, sea changes.

i am exhausted coming upon the end of this year. i have watched each and every one of my friends come through the darkness and nothing was expected and we made it through somehow, if barely, if fighting the whole way, if wondering why we fought so hard.

tomorrow is my mother’s 50th birthday. she would probably say harsh words if she knew i told, but she amazes me because she has preserved her youthful energy and perceptiveness and outlook, has always been able to see the logical resolution in tragedy, hardship, passion, pain. it inspires me, to think that what happens in this 27th year of mine is just little moments compared to a life.

i told a friend today i am coming upon the end of the year in a bit of shock, knowing much more and so much less than i did this time last year, when i sat in japan writing love poems, wondering if the league would make it through its troubles, negotiating that tender space of my family. this year, no snowy japanese mornings, no love poems to write. but some things never change…

today bush said domestic spying was a vital tool in the fight against terrorism. today i watched a fairly anti-corporate feature film. i may wake up to a transit strike in the morning, in new york we do these things in the middle of the night. i remembered today that i’m a pleasure activist and i did that work well this year. i saw a new truth and leadership in the eyes of a 20 year old i deeply respect and it invigorated me.

recently a young indigenous leader was telling me that when he was growing up and would come with anything less than an A, his father would say, ‘well, son, did you do the best you could?’ and he would answer honestly. and that even today, he weighs and measures all the circumstances when external signs indicate he may have come up short, and he stays honest with himself.

as i approach the end of the year, i am asking myself that question, for 2005 did i do the best i could…the circumstances, which in any case no one else can ever fully grasp, were daunting; and i spread myself thin, and i worked hard. was it enough? is it ever?

i am excited to celebrate my mother’s birth. i am excited to smell south carolina all around me, and to be around the people who most need my work to matter, and who care nothing for power or politics, but care very much about their community.  i don’t always get sentimental on new year’s – but this coming year is starting to resemble a wide open door to a place with no rule of gravity, and i feel the urge to pack light so the wind could take me, if she wanted.  a song is coming to me, and a poem, and the peace that comes from new answers and remembering old questions to return to.

ooh pensive much? its been a while since i’ve written much, it may be a while again.

happy holy days – whatever your practice, this always feels like such a convergence of prayer time of year to me. ‘a little better next year, eh god?’