Wednesday, June 30, 2010

golden nugget: harryette mullen

one of my favorite things to do is to read aloud and listen to people read aloud. what can i learn from myself when i speak, distinct from what i learn from myself when i think? in what ways might someone else's voice enrich my day, my life, a single moment? the possibilities are increasing, and might never end!

here's a gem from harryette mullen. she's reading a poem called "Dim Lady"

before she reads, she shares with her audience a bit of writer's advice. what makes it golden is that what she shares is really advice for people, everywhere. she says:

"you don't always have to face the blank page; you can start with something already written."

for us writers, who often struggle with the frequently daunting task of beginning a piece, with finding the best way to articulate that exciting idea in our brains, this is good news. but for people, and activists in particular, this might be even better news to zero in on. for the world we're trying to create, for the change we envision and seek to manifest, we don't have to start from scratch. though humans are still relatively young in this world, we have a rich history to draw from!

we can build on the work that's already been done, build on the long trajectory history has offered us of people committed to liberation. in that way, writers and activists, and people of all persuasions can get the strength we need to do the important work we're invested in doing from already existing sources.

viva the wheel! and not reinventing it!

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