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Can’t stay away from…

July 12, 2010

Philip Toledano’s Days with my Father: a photo journal his father’s last years. Breathtaking.

Cade Martin’s beautiful photography:

Katie at Kloncke.com, an awesome blog of personal stories, Buddhist teachings, and feminist and anti-racist reflections from a woman who seems to be really living everything she writes about. Here’s an excerpt from a recent post awaiting the verdict from the Oscar Grant trial:

So here we have an alternative. Rather than making anger comprise our actions toward an enemy, we let it inform and energize our actions. Instead of directing venom toward “the pigs,” we might use this precise negative mind to observe, The forces that are supposed to be keeping our communities safe — serving us — are making us less safe. Killing us. These forces control the people, but they’re not of the people. They have little to no accountability to the majority of the human beings whose lives are in their hands.

I don’t want a racist patriarch “protecting” me. This serves neither of us…

“Community policing” — collaboration between existing law enforcement agencies and the groups they serve — doesn’t go far enough. I want people from my own community protecting me — people I know and trust. People I’ve elected to a community safety body; reflecting the genders, races, class, and national and ethnic origins of the community; not sadistic or prone to power-trips; militant but not militaristic; who can perform equally well the work of confrontation and of de-escalation, healing, and peacebuilding — who won’t just selectively enforce the laws and rules that favor the powerful. Who won’t use handcuffs and tasers loaded guns to break up young Black men’s non-fights on New Year’s Eve.

Russian poet Vera Pavlova:

And finally, this gem from Dorothy Day. And yes, I know I’ve posted it here before, probably more than once twice a few times.  But it gets me through so many days, really:

We were just sitting there talking when lines of people began to form, saying, “We need bread.” We could not say, “Go, be thou filled.” If there were six small loaves and a few fishes, we had to divide them. There was always bread.

We were just sitting there talking and people moved in on us. Let those who can take it, take it. Some moved out and that made room for more. And somehow the walls expanded.

We were just sitting there talking and someone said, “Let’s all go live on a farm.” It was as casual as all that, I often think. It just came about. It just happened.

I found myself, a barren woman, the joyful mother of children. It is not easy always to be joyful, to keep in mind the duty of delight. The most significant thing about The Catholic Worker is poverty, some say.

The most significant thing is community, others say. We are not alone any more. But the final word is love. At times it has been, in the words of Father Zossima, a harsh and dreadful thing, and our very faith in love has been tried through fire.

We cannot love God unless we love each other, and to love we must know each other. We know Him in the breaking of bread, and we know each other in the breaking of bread, and we are not alone any more. Heaven is a banquet and life is a banquet, too, even with a crust, where there is companionship.

We have all known the long loneliness and we have learned that the only solution is love and that love comes with community. It all happened while we sat there talking, and it is still going on.

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