I was thinking about the upcoming election today, but no. Shit. I don’t want to write about that.
I’m writing about something personal, but in my bones I feel it’s related. The two of us are chasing joy, taking a deep breath, putting on double masks, and getting on a plane for Philadelphia. Back in the day, we did what I called a Long-Haul Tour every fall, taking ourselves and our performances and our books all the way across and around the country. In that process we also got to see the myriad of beloveds who are part of our tribe: creators, performers, troublemakers, and it was a love-feast. However, doing it in the car meant five days of bone-crunching driving just to get across the country and start the tour. The last time we did that was 2019, and I miss the hell out of our friends, but we can’t do that kind of trip now.
We can’t perform, but we’ll just go anyway. We’ll fly to Philly, rent a car for a week, and see our folks in Millersville, Bloomsburg, Bethlehem, Philadelphia and New York, then fly to Milwaukee to see our beloved Flora Coker and my brother Dan, newly-discovered four years ago. Thanks, DNA. Then back home, re-filled with joy. There are many we’re not going to be able to see this time, but I’m holding hope for a return.
How is this related to the elections, I ask myself? I know in my bones that keeping my life going requires joy. And I know that I am “wired funny,” and that whatever I most want gets impediments put in its way—by me. It takes a big-assed leap, like when I jumped into CB’s arms in 1960, to bypass the blockage.
So yeah, and there are no guarantees. But no leap, no joy. We have beloveds who have crossed the bridge, who will not be within a hug’s reach, but we loved them when we could, and we still reach out. Now we get on the plane. Now we vote. Now we stay present for whatever will come. And we hold the joy close wherever we still find it. I will go upstairs tonight with my love to sit by the fireplace and then fall into an embrace. I will not allow my funny wiring to block my joy. Onward.