Affirmation #1

Each birth brings into the world equal parts joy and pain.  The challenge of being human requires us to hold both with our palms open.

As I usher in the new year in a new city, in a new job I am reminded of writing and thinking that I began nearly 5 years ago.  Reflecting on the enormous transitions that 2017 brought to me personally, I am ready to begin sharing that work.  It is work that asks how we as a culture are ready to commit to ending the European project on race that was begun some 400+ years ago and that has cost countless lives.  The end to this project will not involve “color blindness” and simplistic multi-culturalism, but rather will ask us to strengthen and broaden our capacity to understand the gorgeous and complex variations that are humankind.  For me this begins with deepening our understanding of embodiment.  My developing work explores embodiment as a reflection of “being” as expressions of birth, death, thought, time, action, earth and love.  The affirmation above comes from this work.

May we all find many blessings as we embrace a world that is not just about variations in color, but also variations in ability, gender, sexuality, and a host of other ways of being human that we haven’t even explored yet.  Happy New Year 2018!


Breathing Deeply


This poem was presented as part of the Love and Change: A Journey of the Spirit session at UUA General Assembly on June 27, 2014

No one needs to tell you to breathe.

You don’t need permission,

For you are already breathing.

You have been breathing your entire life outside of the womb.

You know very well how do to it without instruction,

You will continue to breathe until it is time to stop.

You may naturally have short breaths,

Or long and slow.

They may be uneven

Or ragged.

But you are already breathing…

And you can journey back with that breath

Before you had that head cold,

Or bronchitis.

Before being out of breath from a run or trying to catch a bus or train,

Before the breathing as you gave birth,

Or the gasps and sobs of joy or sorrow.

Journey back to your first breath,

Back to that first rush of air,

Maybe sudden, maybe gradual…

But back to that first moment, 

That affirmed your presence in the physical world.

Inspired by something divine, unimaginable,

Scientific, profound.

Accompanied by a giggle or a gurgle or a cry.

Your first breath.

It was sweet and fragrant,

With all the smells of fertility and life unleashed,

Burning with anticipation of all that future breaths would bring.

Because each breath was sure to bring change.

Your first breath.

Let your next breath bring you back

To your first breath,

When the world became new.

Let your next breath

Be your first breath

Full of joy and pain.

Let the next breath

Be the first breath.

Let it change with you.

Let the next breath

Be the breath of your world still becoming new.