Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Each Day You Mean One More

What can they do
to you? Whatever they want.
They can set you up, they can
bust you, they can break
your fingers, they can
burn your brain with electricity,
blur you with drugs till you
can't walk, can't remember, they can
take your child, wall up
your lover.  They can do anything
you can't blame them 
from doing.  How can you stop
them?  Alone, you can fight,
you can refuse, you can
take what revenge you can
but they roll over you.

But two people fighting
back to back can cut through
a mob, a snake-dancing file
can break a cordon, and army
can meet an army.

Two people can keep each other
sane, can give support, conviction,
love, massage, hope, sex.
Three people are a delegation,
a committee, a wedge.  With four
you can play bridge and start
an organization.  With six
you can rent a whole house,
eat pie for dinner with no 
seconds, and hold a fund raising party.
A dozen make a demonstration.
A hundred fill a hall.
A thousand have solidarity and your own newsletter
ten thousand, power and your own paper
a hundred thousand, your own media
ten million, your own country.

It goes on one at a time,
It starts when you care
to act, it starts when you do
it again after they said no,
it starts when you say We
and know who you mean, and each
day you mean one more.

~Marge Piercy, The Low Road

I just came home from my local polling place having voted for the Republican candidate for President of the United States.  As I waited for the red light to change, a car pulled past me in the other lane, and I noticed with a smile that the car had a Ron Paul bumpersticker on it.  The driver had obviously noticed the matching sticker on my Subaru and our eyes met in the reflection of his rearview mirror and he flashed me a peace sign.  It was a moment where one feels the flash of humanity-- we were friends even though we had never met.  It's a powerful feeling to look another human being in the eye and to know you've met an ally.

One cold morning last January, I looked out my window to see a world blanketed in snow.  I rubbed my blurry eyes with my hands and peered between the blinds again.  That morning I had volunteered to petition for signatures to get Ron Paul's name on the ballot here in Delaware.  It was to be my first foray into that campaign world, and I had no idea of what to expect.  The little voice that lies dormant through the week but looks upon lazy Saturday mornings with longing whispered, "You don't have to go.  No one would fault you if you didn't make it out in the snow."  But another voice spoke up with more sternness, "No, you must keep your commitments.  Let your yes be yes and your no be no."

That was how it all began.  I have been blessed beyond measure because I decided to show up that day.  This Saturday I, along with other dear committed souls, will be a delegate to the State Convention.  With any luck we will shape the future.  Along the way I have met so many amazing, passionate people-- dear Eric, Sam and Nicole, Mark, Randy and Taylor, Meredith, Hollie, Tom, the Young Americans for Liberty, and countless others.  It has been a joy to walk beside them.  And so, this is for them.  This is for my friends who are fighting for Liberty.  This is for my friends who are paying attention.  This is for my friends who care to act.  I say "We", and we know who we mean, and each day we mean one more.  Won't you come and join us?



Valerie said...

Elise I don't know anything about your politician but thank you for posting that excerpt from The Low Road. It is beautiful.

Randy Westergren said...

Very touching and inspiring, Elise. Here's to fighting for what we believe in. Cheers!