i’m off the redeye flight SFO-DTW, in my sweetie’s bed while she’s off on tour. i love detroit sooo much, it really is an epicenter city to me. over the past two years i’ve been here what feels like every other month. i’ve come in the winter and loved the culture of snow and bundling up and hibernating. i’ve come in the summer and been delighted by the joys of swimming the toxic detroit river, seeing the lovely and constantly reemerging natural landscape here.
on the plane i started writing a piece that i am so excited about, called “Welcome to the Age of Yes”, putting flesh on the bones of my general mantra, that change comes at the particularly moment when all the things we don’t want create a deluge that bursts open our barriers to what we do want. And we can name it and step towards it, and its so human.
tonight i get to visit with grace lee boggs, friend and mentor. she called this whole barack thing a long time ago, saying that this is a quantum leap of a moment, that people’s hope and need for change was being answered in this man, in how he was building his campaign. people still need a dynamic leader, but this was a balance of dynamic leader and people’s movement. we talked about the grassroots nature of it, for me the deciding factor was that regardless of the platform he was espousing, i could see he is a process guy. he seeks balance out of anger. i hope he is able to maintain his Way.
i am writing so much now there’s a pile-up – i have three different places where i am keeping lists of stuff i need to write about. two conversations really impacted this – one with someone who was asking me how to improve their writing skills to be faster. my advice was to write something for public consumption every day. whether you advertise it or not, whether it’s long or short, you develop a discipline, a practice, and get it into your mind and fingers as an expectation – a need. the other conversation was with someone asking me why i hadn’t written a book of my own yet. i was giving the huge long list of reasons – i am too young, what do i know, who has time, who reads books, etc etc. and she looked me dead in the eye and said get over yourself. lol. you clearly have a lot of thoughts that you deeply believe in and are moving forward. so i am giving myself permission to write, in a variety of ways. i am blogging, i am writing songs (and keep thinking i am going to do a songblog someday), and i am writing little notes to myself of things-i-am-pretty-sure-are-right. things like: when you are completely and consistently compassionate with yourself, you have a better life, give more to the world, and feel more wonder, delight and learning in the every day. or, airport security that involves a pat-down and half-strip search is just wrong and ineffective. random stuff. i think whatever book project i do will be notes like that, stories on race and militarism from my childhood, love stories, maybe some sci-fi compilations of my future-dreams to make it interesting, interviews with people who influence me…
when i told grace i was working towards a book she arched her brow and said usually she would say i was too young, but she approves in this case, as long as i talk about being biracial 🙂 which is good, cause i love exploring the unique and evolutionary quality of being visibly, undeniably, experientially of two or more races. i say experientially because i rarely meet people who aren’t the fusion of two cultures anymore, whether it’s tribes, races, ethnicities, religions, geographies, classes, or some other difference. but we are socialized to only see race as the big difference, to choose.
i especially love the idea of exploring that while the president of the united states is in our number, has held the space of being perceived as black, speaking to his feelings of being black, feeling his love for his family not at odds with his exploration of identity.
years ago in a conversation with biko baker, ed of the league and also biracial, i said i thought mixed folks would save the world. not in a superhero way, but i do believe the next evolution will be an emotional and connective one. we need to remember and create new ways to be present with each other, and be in community with each other, if we aim to survive. love between people historically at war over resources and power seems a clear healing salve. more than that, its a biological exploration of the space where ideology ends and we realize (again) we are all just water and stardust, flesh and longing, dreams and delays.
i am soaking in this week, which was an amazing week for our organization, i continue to be amazed at much i am learning, but how hard it is to be a boss of anything in the world. the year has been so intense, personal, in my face. i keep flashing back to election night, reading/writing/responding to thoughts on prop 8 (there’s a march in SF tomorrow if folks are interested), and letting different complex waves of emotion rush over me.
just now i watched this video by jasiri x, an impressive brother in the movement who has been doing this informational news over hip-hop beats with visuals summing up each week. this one left me crying like a little baby.
i feel so pleased with the obama thing, much more than i expected. during his campaign i heard him speak, but stayed away from videos, from wilding out, being a superfan, changing my facebook status or my middle name to hussein or any of that stuff, that’s not me. i focus on process, not person-worship. i don’t feel worshipful now. i just feel like we got someone smart, who i can trust to think things thru, to be in charge. the last 8 years scarred me at the marrow level, my restless body is still holding out belief that it can rest. but i am SO happy that i am cynical enough to enjoy life, and openhearted enough still to enjoy and note real change.
ok i am tired now 🙂 it’s 4:20 for my body, time to dream.