Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Notes on Hope

Written to be performed on 26th March 2011

Here I stand, thinking out loud. Hoping you’ll listen. Taking my chance.

I cannot be here today, but still my words…

For those that could not be here today, here are some words in their honour. For those of us here, here are some words to keep us together, keep it together, in face of what’s coming, in spite of what’s been.

What do we need to know? What can I tell you that you won’t have heard a thousand times already?

Even the thousandth time, it might still need to be heard.

Art is not a luxury. I am stating the obvious.

Love is not a luxury. I am stating the obvious.

Wherever, whenever, however, you live, they belong to you.

Art and love are not inseperable. And when something is gone it is gone forever. Let us not lose sight of that fact.

In the country where I live things are changing. Some might say not fast enough. In the country where I live things are being done in my name. I don’t know how to stop them. I don’t know what to say…


Much that you need has been lost. The poems that we know are merely fragments. We must use what we have to invent what we desire. We cannot work in isolation, or in fear of other voices.

Take as much time as you need.

Learn to use your hands, use your heart, give what you can and don’t be afraid. Here is the hardest thing: do not be afraid.

What would that feel like?

You ask me, is this time worse than another? I ask, for whom?

Big my secret. Not just my secret, but all of ours. The secret we’ve all been keeping.

Take as much time as you need.

Keep on moving. Remember how this feels.

What can we do when everything feels hopeless?

I have been trying to imagine where galaxies end and where they begin.

Dear Tim, who will never read this, never hear it, did I ever, even for a moment, amaze you?

What can we do when everything feels hopeless?
Prepare ourselves not for the world as it is, but for the world as it might become. In this preparation, we experience this world as it becomes one, for a moment. This moment. Us. Now.

The last time I saw you, you said “be here now”, but I wasn’t, so –

We will remember this time as a good time. Let us remember today as a good day.

I’ve loved you my whole life, every one of you, especially those I have not met. Whoever you are, now I place my hand upon you, place these words inside you, that you be my poem; I whisper with my lips close to your ear, all of your openings, I have loved many women and men, but I love none better than you, right now, us.

Tell me something I don’t know.

Sit me down at the piano and put your hands next to mine, on top of mine. And teach me to listen, to touch and to play. Play me. Play me again. Play me at a different speed. Until I can do it on my own. And then don’t forget the melody. Keep on singing the song of us when I forget the words.

Language presupposes community. Therefore without you, nothing I say has any meaning. Without love or language, I do not exist.

Some stories never end.

And when this is over how will we know?

When did you last love life?
Go tell it to the big man: what will survive of love is us.

You want my advice?

Walk, do not run, for we are going very far. Now is the time of walking the paths we create by walking them. Ask no permission. Make no demands. Just do. Create the world that does not yet exist by living it. Create a space of dignity, horizontality, love.

Come over some time. I’ll improvise risotto. It will take the time it takes. And you can sit there and tell me all about your day; tell me all about your life.

Even after all these years, I can still ask, who are you?

What have you heard and what have you seen and how did that feel? Tell me everything or everything you can. We don’t have much time.

We are each other. Black skin // white skin. It all tastes the same in the mouth, right?

What’s that I hear? The sound of people living their lives at the speed of making love. Totally fucking beautiful.

I wanted to say, I think finally we’re going to be ok. And if not us then the others we’re doing it for, some day.

This is where I am in history. With you, now, today.

We’re all in this together, right?

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