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October 2/First Quarter Moon
Midterm Elections, Poetry, Podcast Link
The moon has reached a quarter of its journey around the earth. Our view of it makes it look as if it is just a half a sphere floating out in the night sky. We are halfway between the darkest moon and the one with the most reflected light. For this first part of the orbit the light is "waxing” or ramping up. See below a link to the next moon meditation, my voting plan, and the stirring of poetry.
Below is the second in my series of four movement and writing prompt episodes at Yoga Poetry Radio for this first lunation of fall. Last week has gone behind the paywall. Eventually they will all be behind the paywall. That is to motivate you to listen along. Do this pausing and checking in to stay grounded during these changing times. Take the time to collect personal data via this moon-based time machine. It will keep you organized and on the trajectory of making the changes you want to make, with energy to spare, no matter what craziness is going on around you. The rest of the series will post by October 9 - Full Moon and October 17 - 3rd Quarter Moon. After that, back to regularly scheduled programming. Whatever that is :)
My Voting Plan:
The below photos are a little preview of what you will see when you go to the polls here in Minneapolis. Or have a ballot sent to you, as Josh has. I didn’t request a ballot myself, so I will head to NE Minneapolis (980 E Hennepin Ave) to the Early Voting Center next week in order to cast my vote. Find hours and other information here if you also live in Minneapolis. Although I will miss the trip to down the block to St. John’s Episcopal Church where I always see one neighbor or another. After years of returning again and again, there is a pleasant familiarity of entering those front doors and climbing up the carpeted stairs to cast my ballot. Can I remember back to the first time I voted? Can I remember if I went with Mom to vote? Vaguely. I do remember going with her to cast our votes for Hillary very vividly!
And I do know and am very grateful that so many of you are engaged and active already. Thank you for that.
But in case any of you don’t know where to begin, here are my thoughts.
If it is your first time, or even if it isn’t and you have questions, here is the League of Women Voters Education Site Vote411. You can find out where your early voting takes place or what your ballet looks like for anywhere across the nation. If you have moved, find out where your current voting place is. Perhaps your district has changed through redistricting. The landscape has altered since the pandemic and misinformation about the process is rife. So start early to sort through these things. Your attention matters.
ProPublica has a “Users Guide to Democracy” which comes to you in emails. It’s personalized to your address and it begins “Congress works for you. Here’s how to be a better boss.” I like that.
How do you find out more about the individual races? Start by seeing what’s on your ballet. Ask your friends what they know. Read local papers. Talk to your parents, kids, neighbors, coworkers. In midterm election years, which means the years that the President isn’t on the ballot, the party of the president generally loses. That is to say, the people with the energy to show up to vote are the one who consider themselves to be out of power. Midterms fall from our attention because they don’t have the drama of a presidential race. But in fact they matter a lot, all of the House of Representatives are up for election and a bunch Senators. Our Congress, both those bodies together, has control of making and passing laws after all. It is there work that has truly gotten us where we are today. Only members of Congress can introduce legislation, they have control of what gets scheduled and when, and only when it is passed by both bodies does the bill go on to the president. It’s the only branch of the government which can make new laws or change existing. And 2/3rds vote in both the Senate and the House can override vetos by the president. These processes only work well with an engaged and active electorate (all of us) and if there is anything I can do to help you sink in, let me know.
Some Inexpert Found Poetry from Mom’s recent Birthday:
I made pudding for my mother - Butterscotch - and burned the sugar. Ruined by the acrid taste of sorrow I offered it to her anyway. It made a better sacrifice to the God of poetry.
We sat together where the sun shined, had the talk of expectations, What can we expect when mom leaves this half-way state and follows the rain to where it lives? We were only just talking about the first moments, how to care for ourselves in the aftermath, but what of the moments heretofore when her grip was always the tightest and her hands dominate the here and now.
There are so many places to honor her. The best place to watch the sunset Or the first best place she ever knew. The last great place she saved. Or where they go by water. And a rock that lies Across the Great Divide. Death has a terrible beauty in its unforeseen ability to take you where you never thought you'd go.
Much love, Tina
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Resources for Further Study:
The Minnesota Reformer has a series on election administration here in this state. Here is the first in the series that looks at election administration. This one takes the long view and subsequent articles look more closely at specific elements: https://minnesotareformer.com/2022/04/18/elections-explained-who-does-what/
Here is a link to part 2 of the series, which also has links to parts 1 and 3. Follow it down the rabbit hole if you are curious and interested: https://minnesotareformer.com/2022/07/11/election-administration-explained-how-absentee-voting-works/