“Let us” (a poem)

Tahitian Ocean, Tahiti, 2007 (film) © Gabriela De Golia

I’d like to offer a poem I wrote shortly after the 2016 election cycle came to a close. It’s a poem that helped me imagine ways of alchemizing suffering during a time of deep despair. It feels right to share it now when the need for individual and collective healing is even more necessary than it was back in 2016. I mostly wrote it for myself back then, but I thought it might resonate with others, too.

As a white US citizen who benefits from many privileges, I know the sense of despair I keep bumping up against these days is little compared to the despair many others are experiencing. I don’t wish to suggest I know the way forward out of this time of uncertainty and atrocities because I honestly don’t. This poem was simply meant to reignite within me (and, hopefully, others) a more hopeful vision for the world.

I trust we will find a way out of this apocalyptic time under the guidance of those most affected by the oppressive systems we currently live within. I believe another, better world is possible if we listen to the prophets of our times, namely BIPOC activists.

With that, I offer you this poem…

“Let us” by Gabriela De Golia

My dear,

Let me share with you some thoughts
About how we can heal one another.
I don’t know all the ways to do this,
But I’ve thought of some.

Let us do away with concrete
So we may feel the earth
Beneath our feet
And let her breathe easy.

Let us darken our city lights
So the stars may once again be
Revealed to us
And perform their ancient dance,
Naked and glowing.

Let us reconnect
With all the sacred spaces within us
That we have been severed from
So we may rediscover
Our forgotten sanctuaries.

Let us bow down at the altars
To our broken dreams
So we may pay homage
To the resilience
We each have shown.

Let us make symphonies
Out of our laughter
And play them in the public squares
So we may bear witness
To each other’s radiance.

Let us gather up each other’s tears
And bathe in them
Like holy water
So we may truly know
Each other’s sorrow
And gaze awestruck
At the depth of our courage.

Let us find
All of our broken pieces
And mend them back together
With glue made of gold
So we may be stronger
And more brilliant
Than we were at the beginning.