The moment of change is the only poem – Adreinne Rich
Many of my sisters are talking about re-entry. For the un-initiated, this is a term that we often use to describe our experience of returning home from the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival. This is a task we all manage – each in her own way. Some of us have rituals, some of us jump straight back into the demands of our every day lives, some take a few days to rest on a beach or visit friends or family. We realign ourselves to the demands of our everyday lives. We establish a new rhythm to our days, we are full, we are fatigued, we are riding the line between who we are on the land and who we are in the world. It is an exercise in integration. It is an exercise of letting go as we say goodbye to the land we love and to our beloveds. We practice accepting the impermanence of our experience. We adjust. We resume and assume the roles we occupy in the world at large. I see us as a community of shape shifters in that regard.
I saw a friend of mine walking down the street in Oakland today. As I was calling out her name against the noise and commotion of that busy street corner, it occurred to me that no one in that moment could see the power my friend possesses. They had no idea that they were walking next to a warrior in civilian clothes. The world we live in was not built for her or any other woman to be seen that way. It is not built to be a reflection of the strong beautiful handsome brilliant capable warriors that we are – all of us. The beautifully imperfect and impermanent world that we build together at the festival is. To me, that is one of her truest intentions. It’s part of what makes it so hard to leave behind.
A special note to my sisters; thank you. I am changed by our time together on the land that we love. I am more honored than ever to be part of our community. I am changed by the stories that you shared with me, by the way you listened to mine, the sweet clean air in my lungs, by trying to catch a perfect shot of the changing light shining through the trees, by the fires that we built together, by the ashes that landed on my bare shoulders standing in a field at night, by your beautiful handsome and brilliant faces, by our voices lifted together in song, by making eye contact on paths where no one carries a phone, by knowing this place will always live in the cells of my daughter, by seeing you and being seen by you, by being braver than I consider myself to be, by watching you be brave, by setting an intention with you, to love one another this summer. I am changed by just how beautifully we did that. I’m taking these things with me as best I can, until we come together to build it all up and take it all down again.