Mysterious Synchronicity, Blessed Force of Interconnection

By anna blaedel

Here we are, officially in summer, nearing the end of June—a month marked by Pride and Juneteenth celebrations, part of the collective rhythm structuring queer and Black commemorations of liberation, freedom, survival, aliveness. Traditions, ongoing, that help us remember where we’ve been, who we are, and what kind of futures we dream into being by living them, today. We gather. We remember roots. We revel in music, and dance, and food. We remember that celebration is made possible through revolution. We honor the courage and strength and resolve cultivated by those who have gone before, courage and strength and resolve they help us continue to cultivate and enflesh. Loving boldly, living freely, in defiance of death, violence, domination, dehumanization, discrimination, silence, shame. We resist the performative appropriations and commercializations that water down the fierceness, the fight, that is our sacred labor, still. We tell and retell the stories of radical insistence, collective survival, care for each other, otherwise possibilities. We remember how necessary it can be to break laws and defy order for the sake of our shared lifeforce, which is our love for each other, and for our entangled aliveness.

At the beginning of June, a wonderful human and dear friend died, suddenly and too soon. Kate was a big force of connection, of care, of creativity. She laughed loud and worked hard and loved deeply. A memorial service celebrating her life will be held at the end of this month, on her birthday.

It has only been through her death that I learned of a particular manifestation of the beauty-full and magical and mysterious synchronicity that is, as far as I am concerned, Sacredness itself, Creative Spirit, the Cosmic Blessed Force of Interconnection in which we live, and move, and have our being.

A few years ago, my dear friend Saunia gave me a beautiful broadside print of a poem. Framed, hanging on the wall, I return to it often. I vaguely remembered that Saunia knew the poet, as well as the person behind the press that printed it, but no more than that.

Kate and Saunia did not know each other, never met, each entering my life during different chapters, while living in different states. Only through the grief-filled sharing in the wake of Kate’s death did I learn that the broadside poem—“The Bigger We Get” by J. Robin Kimball—was printed by Campbell Raw Press, which is a small press started by Kate’s beloved sister-in-law and brother.

Our connections—with each other, with the Sacred, with lifeforce, with the Love that makes aliveness possible—run deeper and stretch wider and enable more than we can possibly know.

And so, I share this poem with you, a sacred offering as June comes to a close, and as our love-fueled labor of liberation calls us on…

         “The Bigger We Get” by J. Robin Kimball

We should have called it AUDACITY MONTH,

To prevent them from saying “what do you have to be proud about.”

What we have, and thanks for asking, is courage, strength, resolve,

And a deep disinclination to let death drive us back.

We’re not precisely “proud”

That a set of connections in our brains and hearts drives us to connect our hearts and lives to Certain Other Folks,

We are proud that we are audacious in the face of hate.

We are proud that our answer to ugliness is to make our lives as pretty as possible.

We are proud that we dance when they want us to pray,

And we scream when they want us to cry.

We are proud that the more we’re wished away

The louder we get.

The louder we get.

The louder we get.

We are proud of our daring friends

Who send our wedding announcements out to their families

And have those conversations with us, for us, loving us.

We are proud of the churches we carve our of our own bones

When other churches turn us out.

We are proud that we become furious when they want us afraid,

And that we become art when we are furious.

We are proud that we reach for each other still.

We are proud that the smaller they ask us to be

The bigger we get.

The bigger we get.

The bigger we get.

Thanks be, and may it be so.

Rev. Anna Blaedel

Rev. Anna Blaedel is theologian-in-residence at enfleshed. They bring an attentiveness to the intersections of academic, activist, and ecclesial engagement. Anna nourishes students through campus ministry for the University of Iowa Wesley Center and is enrolled in a PhD program in Theological and Philosophical Studies at Drew University’s Graduate Division.






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