“I am that woman”
2022 the year we learn to listen to love
Week 15--in which we remember that we are all those women
Friends, soul writers, mystics, witches, and lovers of prayer,
Today’s Notes from the Field is a prayer. And not just any prayer.
I wanted to do something to celebrate Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s confirmation to the United States Supreme Court. She is the first Black woman elevated to a court with a long often brutal history of white men making decisions that solidify white male dominance and power.
In her emotional speech at the White House, Judge Brown Jackson quoted Maya Angelou, “I am the dream and the hope of the slave.”
We've seen several radically different Supreme Court nominations in the last few years.
On one hand, we just saw this elegant, brilliant, articulate woman, more qualified than her three predecessors combined, stay calm and focused through days of questioning by arrogant white men trying desperately to trap her into saying something they could pounce on.
On the other hand, four years ago we watched in horror as Brett Kavanaugh, who had never even managed a trial, screamed and cried throughout his Senate confirmation hearings, even dissolving into screaming “I like beer!”
I tried to watch his hearings. I tried. But every time I turned it on, I would take one look at his white male screaming face and turn it off. I know this face. This screaming white male face.
How many times in this life and in countless previous lives have I been attacked by screaming white male faces, spitting out their rage at me. For what? For saying something they didn’t like? For saying something truthful? For asking a question they didn’t want to be asked? For pointing out a hypocrisy? For saying no?
That’s it in a nutshell—for saying no.
When Dr Christine Blassey Ford had the courage to face Brett Kavanaugh on camera, not just in front of the Senate, but in front of the whole country, and tell the truth about his sexual assault, I was both terrified for her and oh so very proud.
Dr Blassey Ford said no. No, you are not qualified to be on the highest court of this land. And, as you probably know, she paid a horrific price for saying no. She had to leave her job and take her family into hiding. She had to hire armed bodyguards.
Dr Blassey Ford is my sister. And this prayer came through to honor her. To honor all my sisters--and brothers--who have spoken their truth. We know some of their names.
But in the end, this prayer is for all the women who history has viewed as completely insignificant.
I want to say I see you. I see you then. And I see you now.
And I hope you see Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, your sister, who persevered.
I Am That Woman
©Janet Conner, October 2, 2018, in honor of Dr Ford’s testimony
I am Dr Christine Blassey Ford, breaking the silence
I am Nina Simone, wailing justice songs
I am Sarah Bernhardt, commanding the stage
And Clara Barton, binding our wounds
I am Teresa of Avila, swooning in her castle
I am Hildegarde, composing hymns of love
I am Mary Magdalene, teaching esoteric mysteries
And Mother Mary, whispering a sacred yes
I am May Sarton, meeting herself in her journal every day
I am Emily Dickinson, relishing her wild nights, wild nights
I am Madame Curie, expanding the science of light
I am Sally Ride, piercing the heavens, descending to earth
I am Eve, sharing the sweet fruit of knowledge
And Lilith, saying no, I am not less
And Maya Angelou, rising again and again and once more, again
I am all that
I am the woman unknown
The woman holding the family together,
feeding her husband, comforting the children,
gathering the community, lighting the sacred fire,
and singing the sacred love songs
I am that woman who has no name
No name riding waves of history
But I know her
I am her
She is seen now
She is heard now
She is me now
I bow to her strength
She bows to my courage
And together, we rise
to celebrating the sacred women who persevere, who survive, who speak, who rise
PS: I am in a massive creative phase right now creating an all new Hana I Ka Pono prayer intensive in May with Kahu Lahela. I hope to open it for registration next Sunday.
And, coming in June, the most radical thing I've ever created: a 13-dark moon witch mystery school!
You can read and share all my Notes from the Field from the blog section on my website.
Come hear me (and Hyldemoer) read Notes from the Field on YouTube.
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