By T. Tackett
Dear beloved family,
I write this with a heavy heart. In the last couple months we have lost a lot. The towns are flooded. The cities are on fire. The air is thick, toxic, and unbreathable. Most of the water, if there is water, is not potable. Which leaves us thirsty and breathless.
We have lost a lot of people. All by murder in my opinion. If not by direct assassination, then by the insidious hand of the systems that be.
In these times of resistance and working towards radical transformation; grief and trauma collect in creases of our being. There is no way around it. Battle wounds become battle scars, which become evidence of our fight.
In our work, we are often reminded that grief is a call to action, yet it is difficult to move forward without fully understanding what is happening to us, to our children and to the outcome of all life on earth. It feels all to much. The pain. The burden weight on our soul, trying to sink us. We try to listen, but the sound of our hearts breaking is just to loud.
Don’t get me wrong, most of us understand death, we have had intimate relationship with it. But from this death, life often begins anew. So here in this deep grief we are met with life again. And in this new life, we bare the grief of our old life; a death which we have not yet accepted, and a death which hurts our hearts to bare.
I have always held the belief that we can change this world and we can heal ourselves in the process. But this is hard. This is painful. This is unthinkable. It has never been done before and at the same time it has been done for generations. These two truths are not opposite or contradictions. They are of the same and live within each other.
It was Charity Hicks, one of the great martyrs of the Detroit Water struggle, who called us to “Wage Love”. This idea is not a passive act, but a call to be courageous. A call to heal, but not forget. To remember our grief. To hold it in our pursuing of justice. And to also remember one can not do this alone. That the possibility and opportunity to heal lays in the foundation of the beloved community. And that every member of the beloved community never truly leaves us. Even in death, They live in the home of our hearts and that in each step towards justice, they continue to walk with us forever.
I finish this letter to say that It is together we will continue to fight, it is to together we will grieve and it is together, we will live again.
In struggle and love
T.Tackett is a Community organizer, Activist ,Water Protector, and Land Defender. Born and raised in the Great Lakes region.