I awake in grayness, the wind-blown rain pattering at the window. It is warm beneath the blankets; when I throw them back and lunge toward my clothes, the cold air slaps my skin. In the freezing darkness I grin. We've made it to another sunrise, the world's here, and I'm alive.
For the record, I don't believe that nuclear war will happen; I can't believe that all the loveliness, the grace of life on Earth, will be destroyed by greed and stupidity. Yet paradoxically I believe that it can happen, and this belief forces me into this moment.
Which is perfect and ruby precious as always. Even during the Bay Bridge commute on a rainy rush-hour Monday, the bay glows with magic, San Francisco twinkles through the mists. And I fall in love as I do every morning, and renew once more my vow to honor and protect this jewel, my home.
The question, of course, is how. There is so much to be done; I could spend every moment demonstrating, petitioning, lobbying. This is certainly useful and rewarding, but it is one more thing that takes me away from hiking the hills, and meditating on the rhythmic sea. And I see the dilemma, for if we don't work to change our course, there will be no hills and no sea.
So I do what I need to do, what feels right and good: walk the dog, circulate petitions, visit my mother, and I do it as consciously and joyously as I know how.
If the threat of war makes me want to gorge on life, it also makes me want to stick my finger in the dike of nuclear madness. This moment might be the one that will change the future, and, if that is so, I can't wait for tomorrow to act. Now is all I have.
Now makes me race like Hermes, wings on my feet, the sun at my back, to do all that I want to do, say all that I need to say. Speak my heart to my family, friends, the universe: I love you, I want to live, I want peace. And show love, love living, live peace. I work for the future, I live in the present. I realize that my survival is tied up with that of billions, with that of the Earth. We must think planetary, think big.
At work I kiss skinned knees, wipe up spilled milk, sing silly songs. Sometimes in a black mood I'll look around and curse whatever would steal our children's future. But I can't believe that it will happen. The children's eyes are too clear and their hands too soft, their laughter too quick for them to be victims of anyone's narrow viewpoint. Their lives are up to us. They are tomorrow's hope, but we are today's.