I’m moved that day by how people are called and how they show up. I don’t usually tear up hearing the Star Spangled Banner, but I did when it was sung by Lady Gaga during Joe Biden’s inauguration.
Here are the opening lines from the Inaugural Poem by Amanda Gorman (22, the youngest inaugural poet in American history)
When day comes, we ask ourselves, where can we find light in this never- ending shade?
The loss we carry. A sea we must wade.
We braved the belly of the beast.
We’ve learned that quiet isn’t always peace, and the norms and notions of what just is isn’t always justice.
And yet the dawn is ours before we knew it.
Somehow we do it.
Somehow we weathered and witnessed a nation that isn’t broken, but simply unfinished.
One of my favorite quotes by Paul Hawken:
“When asked if I am pessimistic or optimistic about the future, my answer is always the same:
If you look at the science about what is happening on earth and aren’t pessimistic, you don’t understand data.
But if you meet the people who are working to restore this earth and the lives of the poor, and you aren’t optimistic, you haven’t got a pulse.
What I see everywhere in the world are ordinary people willing to confront despair, power, and incalculable odds in order to restore some semblance of grace, justice, and beauty to this world.”
A few lines by Stacy Abrams:
Invention, discovery, and empires are built of chances taken with high degrees of failure.
We will all at some point encounter hurdles to gaining access and entry, moving up and conquering self-doubt, but on the other side is the capacity to own opportunity and tell our own story.
And a few quotes from Martin Luther King Jr.
“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
How are we each showing up?
What supports you?
What challenges you?