Thursday, December 11, 2008


My very pregnant friend Jen, soon to give birth to a son and with him all the possibilities that entails, sent me this blog. Not only am I reminded of the feeling of change in America, but what it feels to go through change in my own life, to turn toward the pain. I am thankful for the symbolic midwives in my life who encourage me as I birth a new idea or part of myself, those friends and family who tell me, "You can do it. You are doing it." To know that leaving the safe known and journey into the unknown is to open myself to more possibilities.

"Something is trying to be born in America. Again, I’m not quite certain what it is, but the new emerging reality seems firmly related to the visionary calls of King and the earlier urgent hope of Langston Hughes (“O, let America be America again/The land that never has been yet/and yet must be/The land where every [one] is free.”) Suffusing all of it I hear as well the beautiful wisdom and strong challenge of June Jordan: “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.”
...Not only is something trying to be born in America, but some of us are called to be the midwives in this magnificent, desperately needed, and so painfully creative process.


"Often, especially in the last stages of a pregnancy, this spiritually-grounded companion of hope said she also speaks to the infant in the womb.

"Recognizing the deep sense of safety and security experienced by the womb-kept child, imagining the great joy involved in having all his/her needs supplied almost effortlessly, Selena said she shares words of encouragement with the infant as well. Like a womb-whisperer, she says something like, “I know how good you feel, how surrounded you are by a protective nurturing ocean of love. I realize it feels as if this is the only world you need to know. But, my child, when you start to feel the urgent life forces beginning to move you down, to push you out, to press your tender head into that seemingly impossible opening, go. Let yourself move toward the light, painful though it may be. The fullness of your life is waiting for you on the other side. Go, come, my child. You can, you must make it through. You can do this.”

"Even as Selena shared her marvelous work and words with me, I began to see their meaning for our nation and its social midwives. We Americans are both mother and infant, giving birth, seeking new life, full of fear, full of pain, turning away from the possibility of even more pain, feeling “the urgency of now,” wondering if we are able, afraid of what the new life demands and costs, fearful of giving up all we know (or think we know) so well, grasping all that keeps us from new beginning, from new life. Afraid of the pain, afraid of the unknown, afraid of the hope, we live urgently in need of midwives. Are we the ones?"

~ Read the blog in its entirety: "Midwifing a New America" by Vincent Harding

1 comment:

Dionne Sincire said...

Wow! Great symbolism. I never thought about it that way before.

You were always a great friend to me. I don't have too many memories of the past, but you're in a couple of them.

I hope to support you the way that you were there for me so many years ago.