The darkest night

Dear President Trump,

It feels really appropriate that you signed the gift to your family and friends (aka “the tax reform bill”) on the day of the longest night of the year. I saw the WP piece this morning about your donors pledging big money to get the propaganda presses churning to sell the American public on the new legislation ahead of the 2018 elections. I couldn’t stomach reading it all, but I did see how you all are also banking on people’s short-sighted, myopic “oh I got a few more hundred dollars back this year” inability to do math to figure out that with their increased healthcare costs they are really losing money. So it is indeed a dark night for the vast majority of us. However, no amount of hand waving and glossy distraction is going to keep us from reminding voters over and over which of you all voted to afford ever greater accumulation of obscene wealth to the already obscenely wealthy at the expense of the poor and middle class. Fortunately we have some choice pictures of many of you looking as smug as cats who swallowed canaries that are date stamped and we will use them to remind everyone who did what for and to whom.

This evening at church many of us got to walk our labyrinth by candlelight to mark the longest night in an entirely different way. I don’t know if you’ve ever walked a labyrinth (I somehow doubt it) but generally one sets an intention for the walk. I focused on letting go of impatience, fear, and arrogance and brought an intention to be curious, compassionate, humble, and committed to critical thinking. Oh, and I realized toward the end how important maintaining a sense of humor is since otherwise it could all get very tedious and dour. Well, you can probably tell from the first paragraph that I didn’t exactly succeed in leaving the negativity there in the center of the labyrinth, but it was still a nice respite for a little while. It was also really nice to be there with so many others, many of whom I’ve never seen before and who probably noticed the sandwich board outside the church building and came inside for some community. It was quiet and companionable, and my friend who came with me noted that the bits of talking were like angels murmuring.

May we make safe spaces to re-collect ourselves.
May we make places where angels can murmur happily.
May we make time to be in healthy communities.
May we make and keep peace with ourselves and one another.

Tracy Simpson

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