Post-election -- You are white and I am black

Posted 04.11.13

SHAWVILLE, QUEBEC | You are white and I am black; you green, me orange. At other times you are black and I'm white, you orange, me blue. Purple or green; one of us north, the other south, east or west, and reversed again, and reversed again, and again, and again. We are like a circle or a globe. A globe of every quality, every sound, every goal, belief, ambition, demand, and with every possible dream within our hearts.

This globe around us is a universe, although it looks like a household, a neighbourhood, a community. It's a universe containing most things, all of them in contrary pairings -- a dance, you might say, a dance one way and then the other, one of us leading, then the other.

Close up, each of our contraries can be a division, a Berlin Wall, a conflict. We dis-learn about each other; we dis-learn how to speak to each other with respect and understanding. As are we on this globe, we are in fact a unity. We live especially the close-ups; we strive to see the globe in its wholeness, and we almost succeed, sometimes.

How can we gain perspective? How can we gain a view from above when we are mired below, our feet tangled in our pasts and our ankles bound by every fear we can imagine?

It is so much easier to scare ourselves, like a horror movie, than to look carefully and at length, than to look in the shadows and into what is not obvious and into what is not being shouted at us by every flapping electronic mouth.

How do we survive the daily moment, to reach this long view of ourselves and our future? There is not scenic tower or lookout; there is no cultured trail to the summit, but there is a well-traveled and comfortable slide to the depths. How do we move ahead in this circumstance? How do we find the freedom for each of us to grow, and for all of us to grow -- they cannot be separated for long, before collapsing.

We are not opposites; we are complements on a circle, a one-thing, a community created by giving most sides a voice, however brief, and by growing together, in however many directions we can manage at once.

How do we become a real society, a mature community? How do we finally throw away the fears and the manipulative threats we are fed daily and constantly?

How do we become, not the past, not a partial people, but how do we become a real people, a new people, a visionary people?

How do we build a new society, using the granite blocks of our past but not constricted and strangled by that very exploitive past or by our well-earned desire to just close our eyes?

How do we avoid sleeping through our lives?


Copyright © 2014 Fred Ryan/Log Cabin Chronicles/04.14