Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Rising

Thank you to all of you real live people out there who are so kind and thoughtful and supportive!

I'm feeling better nowadays.

Kk tells me that this blog is quite somber. It is true. I seem to use it as a therapeutic tool. I've really never been able to find a good therapist until I met blog world. But, I am so far from all somber all the time.

I love life. I love sucking the marrow out of my every day. I love eating and playing and working and thinking and sitting and biking and walking and dreaming and sleeping and waking and doing it all again and again.

While I was wallowing in my own self pity last week, I failed to let you in on something beautiful that we were able to experience.

Last Monday Bruce Springsteen played a free concert/Obama rally right up the road from our house. Many of you know I love the boss a whole hell-of-a-lot. So, in this time of uncertainty and struggle, it was so fitting to get to participate in a special treat.

Bruce in Ypsilanti

He played an acoustic set. The set list: The Promised Land, The Ghost of Tom Joad, Thunder Road, Devils and Dust, Used Cars, No Surrender, the Rising, and This Land is Your Land.

This is a video of the speech he gave in Philadelphia (he gave the same one in Ypsilanti during the show we saw last Monday). I was moved to tears on that cool Michigan late afternoon as the nearly setting sun beamed out from behind clouds at the end of the set. I shut of my over-analytical mind for a few moments and let the idea of an "american dream" that is just and right for all people and the planet settle over me. The actual text of his speech is below the video. Enjoy!

I am glad to be here today for this voter registration drive and for Barack Obama, the next president of the United States.

I've spent 35 years writing about America, its people, and the meaning of the American Promise. The Promise that was handed down to us, right here in this city from our founding fathers, with one instruction: Do your best to make these things real: opportunity, equality, social and economic justice, a fair shake for all of our citizens, the American idea, as a positive influence, around the world for a more just and peaceful existence. These are the things that give our lives hope, shape, and meaning. They are the ties that bind us together and give us faith in our contract with one another.

I've spent most of my creative life measuring the distance between that American promise and American reality. For many Americans, who are today losing their jobs, their homes, seeing their retirement funds disappear, who have no healthcare, or who have been abandoned in our inner cities, the distance between that promise and that reality has never been greater or more painful.

I believe Senator Obama has taken the measure of that distance in his own life and in his work. I believe he understands, in his heart, the cost of that distance, in blood and suffering, in the lives of everyday Americans. I believe as president, he would work to restore that promise to so many of our fellow citizens who have justifiably lost faith in its meaning. After the disastrous administration of the past 8 years, we need someone to lead us in an American reclamation project. In my job, I travel the world, and occasionally play big stadiums, just like Senator Obama. I've continued to find, wherever I go, America remains a repository of people's hopes, possibilities, and desires, and that despite the terrible erosion to our standing around the world, accomplished by our recent administration, we remain, for many, a house of dreams. One thousand George Bushes and one thousand Dick Cheneys will never be able to tear that house down.

They will, however, be leaving office, dropping the national tragedies of Katrina, Iraq, and our financial crisis in our laps. Our sacred house of dreams has been abused, looted, and left in a terrible state of disrepair. It needs care; it needs saving, it needs defending against those who would sell it down the river for power or a quick buck. It needs strong arms, hearts, and minds. It needs someone with Senator Obama's understanding, temperateness, deliberativeness, maturity, compassion, toughness, and faith, to help us rebuild our house once again. But most importantly, it needs us. You and me. To build that house with the generosity that is at the heart of the American spirit. A house that is truer and big enough to contain the hopes and dreams of all of our fellow citizens. That is where our future lies. We will rise or fall as a people by our ability to accomplish this task. Now I don't know about you, but I want that dream back, I want my America back, I want my country back.

So now is the time to stand with Barack Obama and Joe Biden, roll up our sleeves, and come on up for the rising.


james said...
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jay said...

Hey, sombre blogging is what you should do if you are feeling sombre - blogging is way cheaper than therapy, innit? HOWEVER, I am ever so pleased you aren't always sombre (I didn't think you were) and that you love life so much. That's what life's for, after all - I love sucking its marrow too ;o) xx

PS: What's with the comment above?! Spam?