|Henry Fonda as Tom Joad, THE GRAPES OF WRATH, thanks to this site.|
"I'll be aroun' in the dark. I'll be everywhere-wherever you look. Wherever there is a fight so hungry people can eat, I'll be there. Wherever there is a cop beatin' up a guy, I'll be there...I'll be in the way kids laugh when they're hungry and they know supper's ready. An' when our folk eat the stuff they raise an' live in the houses they build—why, I'll be there. "
From The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck
Word(s) of the Week: WITNESS AND REMEMBER
In every way that is humanly possible, we are, I believe, intended to be present for each other, present in kindness, in love, in compassion, in support, in care, in listening, in holding with and to what is most sacred.
I am an old hippie at heart. Before the hippies appeared, I clung to the notion of being a baby beatnik. These were and are my people. I will never not cry when Henry Fonda makes that speech to his Ma during those desperately hard times. Whether or not he survives being one who continues to speak up to authority, he knows his witnessing, his naming, his presence will live on.
On Sunday, my brother Mike shared Gandalf's (J.R.R. Tolkien'a) words from THE LORD OF THE RINGS, “Some believe 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."
We are extraordinary ordinary people in possession of wisdom and strength. We are healers and helpers, mourners, visionaries and heroes. We are the answer to any question, or we are capable of being such. We may, in some moments, feel as though we've lost our way. We have not. We have each been chosen to know, to witness and remember. Let us not forget.