The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil,
but because of the people who don't do anything about it
Occupation magazine - Activism
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Alice Walker sailing the Hot Streets of Athens
Fllowing is the mail message sent by activist Joelle Adlerblum, including poetry and prose items by flotilla activists.
From: joelle adlerblum
Date: Sat, Jul 2, 2011 at 1:58 PM
Subject: Re: [WMRagingGrannies] Fwd: other From Alice Walker, at sea on the Audacity of Hope
To: Ellen Graves
Thank you. What a beautiful and inspiring message. Bless your spirits and your wellbeing. You are all sending your message loudly and clearly, though
tied up in Greece. The governments and officials that have sabotaged your trip- well known-deserve public denunciation and loss of support.
It is shameful to further penalize the people of Gaza and Palestine, who have already been made to suffer great loss and oppression.
I regret that
many Jewish and Christian colleagues who may privately agree are unable to find the courage to say so publically, or to support organizations that
sponsor the flotilla and strongly challenge the Israeli Occupation. Appeasing the Israeli government and major zionist organizations in the
U.S. are very strongly counterproductive May the Gaza Flotilla`s experience convince fence-sitters to speak out, act, demand truth and justice
for the Palestinian and Gazan people. Joelle
--- On Sat, 7/2/11, paki wieland
From: paki wieland
Subject: Fwd: [wesailforjustice] From Alice Walker, at sea on the Audacity of Hope
To: email@example.com, `Frances Crowe`
, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, `Sherrill Hogen`
Date: Saturday, July 2, 2011, 6:32 AM
Enjoy! And please sheare with apj, mepc, or any listserve you are on.
Our spirits are strong with Gaza. Love/agape from Greece
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, Jul 1, 2011 at 9:51 PM
Subject: [wesailforjustice] From Alice Walker, at sea on the Audacity of Hope
Today is, I think, the 31st of June (Friday?)or is it the1st of July?
We have been in Athens since the 21st - trying to get to Gaza. Many impediments orchestrated by the Israeli government. But what a wonderful group of humans.
Therefore: We`ve won. We`re in Gaza. To be in Gaza is to feel this love. To know there is always a part of humanity that is awake even though the overburdened or the bewitched remain sleeping.
My throat is sore from breathing the tear gas that drifted into our hotel windows, as Greeks, mostly young, battle police, their brothers and sisters who are paid to keep them in line. This is the tragedy. I feel so much compassion for both sides my eyes tear and not only from the gas.
It was hard to breathe. My lungs were fighting hard to protect me. How I adore them, my lungs. And so many of our group tried to protect us, my lungs and me, too. A lovely young man named Steve gave me his own gas mask and someone else, a beautiful young woman with straw colored hair and blue gray eyes gave me the benefit of her knowledge of how to wear it.
I do not like calling such angels `blonde` as I feel the word is so loaded now and it sets them outside of Nature and somehow diminishes them.
I spent a blissful hour yesterday massaging Hetty`s feet. She has the most wonderful gray eyes - full of humor and light. She`d never had a foot massage before, she said. And she is eighty-seven! Hard to imagine.
Hetty, I said - when she told everyone who passed by us: `I`m being spoiled` - I have a full body massage at least once a week!
This was a high point for me, as it is well established by now in myself and among my friends, that I like to massage the feet of anyone who stands up for us. Humanity, I mean.
Or the other animals.
Hetty, holocaust survivor, inhaling the gas in Greece, but even more poignant, anticipating being tear gassed by the Israelis who are doing everything they can to threaten our boat.
I have no computer - they said not to bring one on the boat because it would likely by destroyed or confiscated - only this small notebook in which I have been avoiding writing the poem that starts and stops in my head:
Sailing the Hot Streets of Athens, Greece
©2011 by Alice Walker
It has been so
Is it hot
where you are?
in a destroyed
The whole world
by its weathers
still is watching
as we yearn
towards each other.
Trying to embrace
to give each
The whole world
& it is
They are making
for us to move
but I remind
of all people
They know this place
we are in
being able to move.
They know it
This place of stalemate
& stagnation, so unbearable
to any heart
is where they
They will forgive
if we do not
having left our
with all my heart
in the magic
and the power
The women & men
& our frustrations.
most of them are
& we are glad
We want them
to see their
& their elders
attempting to make
We pray they
are of good heart
they may never
That a boat
with love letters
is a threat
I have given
my word that I would
and so I do - if not
on our boat
that is not so far
allowed to go
the air sending
thoughts and feelings
We all sail.
We sail the hot, sticky
of Athens, Greece
longing to see
to the people
Written on our beautiful boat whose canopy is a giant peaceful American flag, as we sail the waters off the coast of Greece and are intercepted
by the Greek coast guard.
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