The Audacity of Hope

“Hope has a cost. Hope is not comfortable or easy. Hope requires personal risk. It is not about the right attitude or peace of mind.

Hope is action.

Hope is doing something.

Hope never makes sense.
Hope is weak, unorganized, and absurd.

Hope, which is always nonviolent, exposes, in its powerlessness, the lies, the fraud, and coercion.
Hope posits that people are drawn to the good, by the good.

This is the secret to hope’s power.

Hope does not separate us from them, hope sees in our enemies our own face.”

— From a speech given by American journalist Chris Hedges at an anti-war demonstration in front of the White House on Dec. 17, 2010

#44 [Ominous.] Dark clouds and light

The dead man in my stomach turned over in his sleep inside me this morning making me sick with anticipation.

The coming storm was not content to let me sleep, either.

Prayers for peace went unanswered until after whirlwinds hit:

It’s not the end of the world, but I can’t help but to feel I can see it’s edges

I’m certainly dying, but I can feel something rising

Don’t we all die to live anyway?

If this is pain there must be beauty on its way;

Can I live to see it?

I don’t believe this is the end, even though my body quakes at what it sees coming

I may die, but I will live to the other side.

#18 M.G. Perkins

What a terrifying, yet beautiful and necessary thing it is to have an older man look you in the face
expose your weakness
and nurture you to life.

If enough people say you’re wise, you really begin to believe it,
Forget that you’re only 20-something and still learning,
That you don’t have to be so serious,
That there’s no need pretending you’re holding everything together,
Or that anyone does.

“Man, please. His life is a train wreck just like yours.”

That losing things is okay, and that anything we give up will be restored ten-fold.
It takes a man who lived through a divorce,
stage 4 cancer,
and losing a 6 figure salary saying

“I lost everything and it was the best time of my life.”

To make you understand that you can live past this moment.
The only thing between you and growth is knowing this:

There is beauty waiting to be born from your brokenness.

If you don’t eventually lose your
They will eventually lose you.
There’s only one thing we should completely put our hope in:

“I lost everything and it was the best time of my life. I was finally open to hearing God.”

I’ve got all I need.
I’ve just gotta keep listening.

#6 These Hands Weren’t Made For This

So, apparently I have really long arms
So skinny
people think I must hit with all the intensity of wet spaghetti,
Because in fights I’d never strike back
In 2nd grade, Derrick Coleman told me that I didn’t deserve my height after smashing my plastic Batman lunchbox into my left eye
“That’s what you get big head”
“You the tallest nigga in class,
but ain’t no one scared of your skinny—”
Icepack from the nurse helped my head,
But today,
15 years later, those words still hurt.
So I started chasing strength
Refusing to be weak
And not just for me:
for every nerd and outcast,
every fat girl with an attractive sister,
every hard-hearted little boy beaten up standing for what he believed in;
The world is not worthy of your stories.
But they still leave us lonely, don’t they?
I’ve lost feeling
Searching for something to fill me
To build me into buildings that never fall,
Call me anything except what I am.
Conceal me until I can deal with these bruises
I’m gonna relearn how to use these hands:
They weren’t made for fists.
I’m so sick of being told I’m broken
And I know I’m not the only one.
I’m done waiting for someone to save me
Last girl who stepped into this wreck trying to stop it
Got caught instead
She offered her body to please me
Too easy;
lighting fires we couldn’t control
[Can’t hold coals to your chest without burning your clothes]
We were thieves,
attempting to steal meaning from one another
But these hands weren’t made for that.
Don’t we all share these stories though?
We once took pride in our lives.
Dreamed of all the things we would be,
but somewhere in between then and now,
we settled for what we got:
I’m not Dr. King like I thought I’d be.
Or a samurai….
Jet pilot, jedi, or a dinosaur.
But I am still something.
I am a miracle.
My mom had six miscarriages before I was born
Almost quit trying to have kids…
But she didn’t.
And she did!
She believed in miracles.
I am God-sent.
Ninety percent chance of down syndrome;
Born without a hint
I believe in those miracles.
You are a miracle.
Light dances in your eyes like ice skaters
Your glow is Aurora Borealis
Can’t you see how important your now is?
We are miracles
of vision and near-death experience.
Of chance meetings and dead writers whose words still inspire
We may sometimes take the hard-headed road
But where we find ourselves does not define us.
We were designed for more,
Step forward.
We have room to grow vast as oceans and galaxies
So set these broken ships to sea.
We’re NOT hopeless.
I know this.
And I know this:
No matter how many times I grope you
These hands will never hold your heart,
It’s hopeless.
It takes more strength to give than to take:
And hands can’t be measured by inches:
only what they hold in them.
The hearts of queens are larger than double D’s.
That can be hard to see.
I know.
But that’s what large hands are for
They’re for seeking God
And I’ve been trying;
But I’ve fallen too far to reach Him:
Still, He sees me.
Meets me here right where I’m at.
Like a swan wading through swamps making pristine springs
I never needed to reach Him.
He’s been reaching for me.
You need to know the same thing.
We were designed for more,
Step forward with me
Everything we’ve waited for is not so far away
I promise,
We can find
why you and I were designed.