anitalorrainemoore

Musician devoted to Justice, Creativity, and Courage


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July 1st… Journal today and Khalil Gibran

Monday… July 1st

Today, right now, I feel peaceful. I am sitting on the couch with my coffee, grey cashmere sweater score from the thrift store, tons of reading material and my ankle propped up on ice. This whole process of surgery and healing has taught me so much I never really understood – how important the pause really is. The caring for your body in a way that reflects that you ACTUALLY care about what happens to it and how it functions. It’s unbelievable to me that I went so long without really taking care of this ankle, or thinking about this at all… the life of childhood sexual abuse survivors perhaps – but I’ll only speak of my own experience. I think back and see so many unspoken, unseen barriers to recognizing the problem. I never want to be that distracted and oblivious again in my life. Therapy, Al-Anon, music, and most of all that Divine resilience spark from somewhere within me (and us all, right?) has put me in this place of submission. I know I’ll be taken care of. What a privileged feeling?

Right now, my mind goes to the families on the border of our country, the refugees trying to find a safe place, a home, the war-torn families of people across this world who truly DON’T know that they’ll be taken care of. Sitting here, I truly don’t know what to do about that. Is there something to be done? Is there nothing to be done? I can’t take on the weight of the world alone. How is it that my conscience (I’m teaching about conscience and morality in my Critical Thinking class this week.) is so heavy from the knowledge of what is happening around me but also the feeling of being incapable of doing anything about it. Is that not the essence of trauma? Am I wrong that everything will be taken care of? Is this a false sense of security in some unseen force? When I have been abused in the past, I didn’t know what to do so I froze and allowed it to happen until is was over and I could escape. Some don’t escape. My escape was in my mind, as my body was being invaded. What of right now? Is my escape the comfort of my mind since there is this seemingly limited amount of impact I can make on the atrocities of this world? (I made 74.50 Friday night performing to send to the Border relief organizations sending lawyers and food/water/proper care to those families.). It seems like so little… I curiously don’t feel shame. That I am proud of, however there is guilt – the healthy spark to do something to rectify wrong-doings comes from guilt. I didn’t create the system in which we live, yet as I live and breath, I benefit and continue to perpetuate its eventuality.

Are we all going through trauma right now, on a cellular and spiritual level right now, if not physical (since it’s all connected)? The world feels to me to be chaotic and mean, and while I sit here with my coffee, it’s hard not to think of all those who are unsafe and literally grasping for their lives.

From therapy, I learned that many truths can be simultaneously existent – the ever-present paradox – the both/and – not simply the limiting either/or. Literally, I believe this is the only mindset which can release me from my own rambling, concerned yet paralyzed state. Also, it’s the only perspective which can shed light on numerous co-existing perspectives of abundance which are hard to see while thinking about the suffering of this world. I never just think about the suffering, I FEEL it. Everyone can. It is impossible not to (even if you are unconscious of it, it impacts you. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” (Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.)) – it is all recognizable and at times, insidiously invisible. So why is it that the joys and the love and the light is so hard to absorb and hold? Again, that shift in lens is the antidote for the tunnel vision. A trusting that somehow, those positivities are truly out there in and amongst the negativities. …and if you venture out to the furthest reaches, perhaps those challenges (in hindsight) give us the tools we need to survive.

In an attempt at gross summation and perhaps even over-simplification – maybe we can cradle in our palms these painful knowings and trust that they are providing insights about how to better live, how much more aware I can be to not only see and recognize, but to act upon those recognitions to create a more just world in one fluid, unnoticeable and perpetual movement with the intention of good?

“On Good and Evil” – Kahlil Gibran (I find deep feeling insights every time I open The Prophet.)

“And one of the elders of the city said, Speak to us of Good and Evil. And he answered:

Of the good in you I can speak, but not of the evil.

For what is evil but good tortured by its own hunger and thirst?

Verily when good is hungry it seeks food even in dark caves, and when it thirsts it drinks even of dead waters.

You are good when you are one with yourself.

Yet when you are not one with yourself, you are not evil.

For a divided house is not a den of thieves; it is only a divided house.

And a ship without rudder may wander aimlessly among perilous isles yet sing not to the bottom.

You are good when you strive to give of yourself.

Yet you are not evil when you seek to gain for yourself.

For when you strive to gain you are but a root that clings to the earth and sucks at her breast.

Surely the fruit cannot say to the root, “Be like me, ripe and full and ever giving of your abundance.”

For to the fruit giving is a need, as receiving is a need to the root.

You are good when you are fully awake in your speech,

Yet you are not evil when you sleep while your tongue staggers without purpose.

And even in the stumbling speech may strengthen a weak tongue.

You are good when you walk to your goal firmly and with bold steps.

Yet you are not evil when you go thither limping.

Even those who limp go not backward.

But you who are strong and swift, see that you do not limp before the lame, deeming it kindness.

You are good in countless ways, and yo are not evil when you are not good,

You are only loitering and sluggard.

Pity that the stags cannot teach swiftness to the turtles.

In your longing for your giant self lies your goodness: and that longing is in all of you. [I am brought to tears at this moment reading this line again.]

But in some of you that longing is a torrent rushing with might to the sea, carrying the secrets of the hillsides and the songs of the forest.

And in others it is a flat stream that loses itself in angles and bends and lingers before it reaches the shore.

But let not him who longs much say to him who longs little, “Wherefore are you slow and halting?”

For the truly good ask not the naked, “Where is your garment.” Nor the house less, “Where has befallen your house?”

Another memory I heard singing in my ears while typing this, “I saw a beggar leaning on his wooden crutch, he said to me, “You must not ask for so much.” I saw a pretty woman leaning in her darkened door, she cried to me, “Hey, why not ask for more? Like a bird on a wire, like a drunk in a midnight choir …I have tried, in my way, to be free.”

– Bird on a Wire, by Leonard Cohen.

Nothing is left unresolved, only momentary feigns of understanding…


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All night long 4/3/15

As the sun rays were warming the trees in the morning of Colorado skies,

I was kissing the air in thanks that I was still breathing.

As the snow effortlessly perched on top of all the green things,

I walked around the block, ran a bit, then slowed down to be grateful once again.

As the woodpecker pecked at the top of a light pole,

I stopped to gaze and wonder.

As this journey moves ever further,

I realize that it is where I have never been.

As I begin to understand the little truths and the big questions

I ask more and more and will play with a spring in my step,

as the snow perches on a blade of grass,

to melt,

to evaporate,

to become snow once more.

snow in denver morning 4:3:15


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It’s morning time… and I’m very nearly on the road again

Road trips make me giddy …and lighting a candle before I start my work in the political world helps me to feel more cozy.  That’s what I’m doing right now.

So I live in Beech Mountain now and it’s been in the lower teens as far as temperature goes for the last week.  I moved and stacked a cord of wood last night in 25 degree weather and I’m leaving town today.

Excited to go and sing with my dear friend on his newest album.  I’ll be there for the weekend.  It is going to be lovely embracing the musical spirit in someone else’s dreams and making them a reality.  I love to harmonize with other voices.  This is where my musical background comes to the forefront, singing in choirs fills my heart with gladness.

Next I’m traveling home to Alamance County where I will be celebrating thanksgiving and visiting with all of my dear pals from Saxapahaw, NC.  I am very much looking forward to Jazz night at the Eddy and hostScreen Shot 2014-03-13 at 11.06.14 PMing Trivia with a music theme.  I hope that all my homie humans will be there and they can commiserate my leaving and staying gone while also celebrating my momentary return.  I will also be purchasing a couple of jars of Saxapahaw Honey.  That makes me happy.  I will be staying with my grandparents during this visit, that also makes me very happy.  I am so glad they are happy and healthy and I look forward to spending some quality time with them.

On the 30th I will be taking the TRAIN to New York City.  It’s an all day ride and I can’t express how excited I am about that.  I love love love traveling by train.  Once I was taking the train from Minneapolis to Chicago and it was glorious.  I was sitting in the all glass car, playing guitar and singing for the people around me, making friends, and discussing politics when suddenly, there she was! The Julia Belle Swain! Shining in all her glory and oh how I wished that train would have slowed down so I could have stolen a better look at her.  I stood up from my seat and exclaimed, “The Julia Belle Swain!” pointing out the window looking like a child who’s just seen the moon for the first time (maniacally and excitedly with bug eyes).  Needless to say, everyone on that train was wondering what else was wrong with this woman they have to ride with for several more hours.

When I get to NYC, I hope to see some dear friends and catch up with the city of a million smells.  On the 1st, I’ve been invited to a gala in Brooklyn recognizing my executive director for her amazing dedication to the cause of getting money out of politics and advocating for fair elections.  Joan Mandle is an amazing woman whom I admire very much.  I have worked for her now for about 4 years and I hope to continue because I believe in the work that we do.  Tuesday, I travel to Sarah Lawrence College to speak on a panel about student engagement, local civic participation and money in politics and then I am giving a training/workshop on lobbying in New York.  It is very encouraging that my student at SLC has worked so hard and is very passionate about getting this event together.  I must say however, that public speaking still makes me nervous.  Singing, dancing, speaking, all of it gives me butterflies.. at least in the beginning.  It’s because I care.

After I’m done in NY, I’m flying to Tallahassee.  YAY for Tallahassee! They are the first city to pass the Anti-corruption act (https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=LhEFehRWApM ) and I get to go there the same day that there is a Granny-D (famous public financing of elections advocate) commemorative walk for campaign finance reform! Link to the event webpage: https://www.facebook.com/events/1510499305868963/  I’ll be arriving late, which means I may not be able to make it to any of the events, but hopefully I get to meet up with my alumni student who’s been helping to organize these events.  The main reason I am traveling to Tallahassee is to visit my sweetheart who is down in Thomasville, GA selling Christmas trees. I helped move about 100 of those trees, so I hope I sell at least one.  I am very much looking forward to being in the deep South for a few weeks – mostly for the cuddling factor and getting to see my man in his holiday Elf suit, but also for the frequent visits that we will take to the Bradfordville Blues Club.  The BBC is on the chitterling circuit, otherwise known as the blues trail.  http://www.bradfordvilleblues.com http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chitlin’_circuit

That’s about it for now, safe holiday traveling for everyone and remember to think about and pray for those in need, and then actually DO something about it.

xoxo,

Anita


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We The People Deserve Fair Elections – Letter to the Editor

strong-public-schoolsI sent this in to be published last night:

We The People Deserve Fair Elections

Are you okay with the fact that North Carolina politicians receive huge donations from wealthy contributors and give tax breaks to the rich and corporations while they cut funding for schools, public safety and for other critical, life-saving services?  If you want a government that cares about and listens to ordinary North Carolinians, then I have good news. There is a coalition of organizations in our state right now working to take back our democracy advocating average citizens speaking out against these injustices who want to get this private money out of OUR election system.  “We the people” are being railroaded by wealthy campaign donors like Art Pope (billionaire CEO of Roses, Maxway and other chain discount stores) whose political money is silencing the overwhelming majority of North Carolinian voices, all the while implementing new laws restricting our right to vote!

Until this year, North Carolina had a public financing option for our Supreme Court races.  Currently, in state legislative races Connecticut, Maine, and Arizona, and city races in New York City, among others, the citizens have fair representation because candidates are not ruled by big dollars but by the needs of the people.   Imagine politicians spending time talking with you and solving problems, instead of using precious hours each day raising money from wealthy contributors. It means that highly paid corporate lobbyists lose their clout! It means that if you have good ideas, you can run for office even without millions in your bank account!

However, by the end of our latest legislative session, Art Pope used his new position as the Budget Director for Governor Pat McCrory, along with a very small group of ideologically driven politicians, to completely gut our Judicial Fair Elections program.  DESPITE the fact that over 93 percent of North Carolina voters believe that campaign contributions can affect a judges ruling (according to a 2011 poll from the nonpartisan N.C. Center for Voter Education.)  This complete and utter disregard of our voices is leaving us in the dark.  We need accountable and representative government., not one beholden to the money that pays candidates’ campaigns.  This is a non-partisan issue.  Money floods our election system and drowns out ALL of our voices.  But there is something that YOU can do and something that North Carolina is doing right now, to make this legislature and governor accountable to their electorate.  Thousands of people across this state have been protesting at Moral Monday rallies, standing up for their rights, and making it known that we will not re-elect those who are tearing apart our foundation of Democracy.

Alamance County is hosting a Moral Monday event, Monday October the 28th, from 5-6:30pm at the Burlington Historic Depot Amphitheater.  We will be rallying to show both our complete disapproval of the actions of our legislature and governor and also rejoicing the efforts of ordinary citizens to stand up and be heard.  We are inviting you to join us in our mission to bring to light the harsh injustices that have been hidden beneath the surface here in North Carolina.  Uncovering the truth that corruption and money are silencing people like us and keeping us from the Democracy that we fight for and deserve.  We should be able to run for office with the support of our communities, not because of how much money we can raise to outspend our competition.  If ordinary citizens had the resources to run for office independent of special interest money,  it could lead to the break we need from the powerful hold that money has on our democracy.

The truth is that with YOUR help, a more accountable North Carolina government could be within our grasp,  even though powerful corporate donors are fighting to retain their grip on our political process. That’s why we need you! Minorities, veterans, the elderly, women, the disabled, unemployed, students, and all working people across the state have an important role in deciding whether North Carolina will have a political system where everyone’s voice is heard. If you want your representatives in Raleigh to listen to YOU, join our Moral Monday rally in Burlington, October 28th to show your support for a fair and inclusive democracy. North Carolinians deserve a state government that is of, by and for the people of North Carolina  —   not one bought and paid for with big campaign checks. Together we can do it! Forward together, not one step back!

NC Schoolteacher blog: http://allisunrae.wordpress.com/2013/07/30/moral-monday/

Video about NC voting rights http://vimeo.com/41520430