November 7, 2020

The Gates of Hope

Too tired last night to write and now today I am looking to the future. Our work is not done. We still have a pandemic showing what exponential means and still so much work to do to heal the divide. But today, empathy and love have won over fear and hate.

The Gates of Hope

Our mission is to plant ourselves at the gates of Hope—

Not the prudent gates of Optimism,

Which are somewhat narrower.

Not the stalwart, boring gates of Common Sense;

Nor the strident gates of Self-Righteousness,

Which creak on shrill and angry hinges

(People cannot hear us there; they cannot pass through)

Nor the cheerful, flimsy garden gate of
“Everything is gonna’ be all right.”

But a different, sometimes lonely place,

The place of truth-telling,

About your own soul first of all and its condition.

The place of resistance and defiance,

The piece of ground from which you see the world

Both as it is and as it could be

As it will be;

The place from which you glimpse not only struggle,

But the joy of the struggle.

And we stand there, beckoning and calling,

Telling people what we are seeing

Asking people what they see.”

by Victoria Safford, the minister of White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church, in Mahtomedi, Minnesota (, is the author of Walking Toward Morning.

Wash your hands, cover your nose, keep safe six, celebrate the good people of America