We Vote Every Day (A Poem by James Tracy)
Amazing how one single day can have so many meanings.
For some of us in the U.S., tomorrow’s elections will bring busy hours of phone banking, door knocking, waiting in line (perhaps for hours), and gathering breathlessly to watch the results. For others, it may also be a bitter day of disenfranchisement — whether because of immigration status, a felony conviction, or dubious “voter fraud” protections. For still others — millions, living outside the U.S. — it may be a day of side-eyeing an imperialist behemoth whose policies will continue to affect (and probably afflict) your life, and the lives of those you love.
For all of us, it will be another day of breathing in, breathing out.
I’m grateful to have heard this poem recently. For me, it’s a centering meditation on the significance and insignificance of a day like tomorrow, among so many other days of action and inaction. As always, would love to hear your thoughts.
Take good care,
WE VOTE EVERY DAY
James Tracy is a long-time economic justice organizer based in the SF Bay Area. He is the co-author (with Amy Sonnie) of Hillbilly Nationalists: Urban Race Rebels and Black Power: Community Organizing in Radical Times.
His articles on social movements and urban studies have appeared in Race, Poverty and the Environment, Shelterforce, Dollars and Sense, Z, Processed World, and at www.jamesrtracy.wordpress.com.
Tracy has edited two activist handbooks: the Civil Disobedience Handbook and the Military Draft Handbook, both on Manic D Press. Works of Poetry include co-editing Avanti Popolo: Italian-Americans Sail Beyond Columbus, and Sparks and Codes.
Among his spiritual social movement influences he counts Thich Nhat Hanh and the Berrigan Brothers.