Today I drove into the city to the Legion of Honor to read the poem of a friend. She won a contest and because she is in Houston asked if I would read her poem for her. Her home was heavily damaged in Hurricane Ike, and it was not possible for her to come.
It was the dancing poetry contest and the event is a combination of poetry and dance, so many of the poems are danced. It was exquisite and continues until 4. I read in the first half and left at the intermission so I could stay with the images and experience.
I have never read in such a large auditorium where the audience is in the dark, and I am in the light. I wanted to look up and out and I did, but I couldn't see anything. I wondered if this is what it is like to be a black hole. I knew the audience was there, could sense them, feel them, and I couldn't see them. It is an odd sensation to know so many people are close and listening and focused and yet unseen. I am still with the experience, and also with the enjoyment of the poems and dance.
When I walked up to the museum, I thought this is what Sarah Palin doesn't see, what the Republicans deny with their cry for family values, the stimulation that a city offers, the museums, the open focus, the illumination that art and community bring and inspire. The Academy of Sciences officially opened today. It is a huge effort. A city has a vitality and an energy that brings people together, all kinds of people. There is a uniting, excitement and enthusiasm that invites introspection and connection.
I drove home across the bridge and the bay was filled with sailboats and an array of visiting boats. People were out, lifting their children on their shoulders to see the view. We need to stay clear on what matters and what this country has built.
I found myself wondering as I sat in the auditorium what it would mean to the world if we had dropped crayons, pens, clay, paints, and paper instead of bombs.