Sunday, July 14, 2013
An Offering to the Soul Consoling Tower
for Trayvon Martin
Here the unimaginable. Americans incarcerating Americans for the color of their skin, for their ancestry, for the off chance espionage that only fear can conjure up. Who would do such a thing?
My sweetheart, a Southern White Man from the mountains of Virginia is a good man who believes in giving everyone the benefit of the doubt. He stands next to me at the Soul Consoling Tower and he comes undone. This pilgrimage to Tulelake, then Minidoka, now Manzanar opens his heart wide and he is seeing the unimaginable that is our American history.
On the tower, people have placed offerings. Stones from the earth. Coins from their pockets. Peace birds fashioned out of paper. At the pillar, we say our own prayers. We gaze at graves marked by stones. I choose a pebble from the ground and place it on the white altar.
He puts a quarter on the ledge. Stands there. And then looking beyond the tower, beyond the barbed-wire-fence he sees the mountain standing blue and hard and tall. This he knows. He goes out into the field. So small against that mountain. So quiet.
Later he will tell me about a circle of stones. A flock of paper birds. A secret buried beyond the fence.
Who would do such things?