joy in the struggle

joy in the struggle

my heart is not my own.    
our hearts are not our own.    
they are here to witness.    

because the pain of the struggle is less    
than the pain of the harm.    

because i’m more scared of not taking    
each next step than I am of taking them.    

because i know i can do it.    

because others will walk with me
and help me be in my heart,
my heart which is not my own.

to tell the truth, my tears, too,
cannot be only my own.
there are too many of them.
cry with me, my friends.
i’ve wept too much for our pain for the world,

and when i laugh, i know that too is
not my own, alone.

so laugh with me, friends!
there’s plenty of joy in the struggle
to go around.

~San Francisco, November 2018

dedicated to the memory of Berta Cáceres, and all those who have given their lives to fight for Pachamama and Indigenous Peoples, everywhere. may such deaths be no more.

If you are moved to share this poem, feel free to do so by sharing a link to this page. In the words of Aurora Levins Morales, “Poetry is labor. Please respect it.” Thanks, loves.

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