Thank you, Brother West

Prospect Park, Brooklyn, NY; June, 2017

“I am here because somebody loved me,” Cornel West declared at last week’s Harvard Divinity School convocation. And I’m sure I wasn’t the only person hearing his words who didn’t immediately conjure up sopping-wet, helping hands reaching out to someone in need in Houston. Many of us, I’m guessing, silently acknowledged life’s ever-present disasters*—and yet here we all were, safe and dry and ALIVE because, despite their inadequacies, the someones in our own lives had gotten us through.

Talk about inadequate! My words to describe how Brother West‘s declaration moved me will only hint at what I want to say! But here goes:

I felt not just the love of West’s parents and the congregants of Sacramento’s Shiloh Baptist Church and all the loving people in his life—like his teachers; he spoke their names with reverence— that brought him to that (fancy) HDS podium last week, I felt eons of Love. I felt its enormous, glorious Power. I felt every single compassionate and loving act that every single member of our species had ever bestowed, shared, offered to another! Talk about welling up!

In the coming days and weeks, may you, may we find whatever ways available to us to connect with that Power. (We’re going to need it.)


*Some of them, like Hurricane Harvey, man-made. (Which makes them that much more devastating, right?)

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  1. Dear Patricia,

    Well, hello, there, Patricia and greetings and salutations to you and to you and for very especially YOU, my so, so very dearly awesome and awesomely special soul sisterfriend Christian Quaker woman who you’re For Always so, so very much!!!!!! 🙂 <3 WOW, sister, I agree with Nancy Bloom above and with your great comment above, Nancy-I, too, think this blog post article by our absolutely brilliant Patricia is quite beautiful, and I say as well a resounding, "Thank-YOU!," to YOU, Patricia, for this great blessing and gift of such a very fine and excellent article here which embodies such empowering and masterful composition in the written word, my so, so very dearest and darling sister and friend, Patricia!!!!!! Sister, the title of this very powerful blog post article here is just perfect, absolutely perfect, and perfectly adds to and complements the great themes and topics of your very engaging and endearing writing here perfectly highlighting your very right on and on point thoughts, comments, and ideas in this so full of grace writing, sister. The picture which you have as usual as always very graciously and generously featured and included with this very insightful and enlightening blog post article is just perfect here, picture perfect. I just so love the beautiful, lovely, and pretty multicolored hearts which are very delightfully drawn on the majestic trunks of the strong trees here, Patricia. Sisterfriend, as well I thank-YOU for the uplifting links which you have as usual as always featured and included with this very salient blog post article here. These links have such deeply profound, interesting, and fascinating information. I have had the great blessing of reading some of our Cornel West's full of such depth books yet I haven't as of yet read his memoir. Sister, it is just awesome reading at the other great link, too, with is so chock full of such superb information, Patricia! My so, so very dearest and darling sister and friend, Patricia, our Cornel West is so, so very much YOUR brother as I just love how you call him, Brother West!!!!! He is YOUR brother, our absolutely FANTASTIC sister, yours, mine, and ours, my and our so, so very right on, wondrously wonderful soul sisterfriend white woman who you're For Always, Patricia!!!!! 🙂 <3 Sister, I'm here keeping on keeping on with my For Always sweetly enduring positive optimism in keeping my very faith and hope alive doing so magnificently in my very, very heart, and in my very, very heart, mind, soul, and spirit, and even being alive very, very many times over because of so, so very dear folks who have been and continue to be there for me, my absolutely AWESOME friendsister, Patricia!!!!! 🙂 <3 My very heart and spirit just ache for the dear folks harmed and impacted by that terrible Hurricane Harvey and now by the Hurricane Irma. Sister, I'm a survivor of a natural disaster as well that you might remember me mentioning awhile back. In the Summer of 2008 there was massive flooding throughout the Midwest like in my great state of Iowa. Back then I had a basemen apartment near the Iowa River. I lost that basement apartment in the Great Flood of 2008, Patricia!!!!! I lost mostly everything but I did get some important stuff out of my old apartment in the evacuation. I wasn't given much notice with the evacuation. Even though I lost mostly everything the main thing is that I'm so, so very incredibly blessed having made it out of there safe and alive. Sister, once again I experienced just how absolutely wonderful so, so very right on, wondrously wonderful white women are in my very, very heart being my very, very heart so, so very much loving and cherishing YOU, my dear, dearest Patricia, and other of my absolutely AWESOME white sisterfriends!!!!!! 🙂 <3 I wasn't given much warning notice to evacuate. I don't drive due to my permanent and chronic physical disabilities. I had an emergency so I called one of my local white sisterfriends to come and get me!!!!! She came for me and helped me to evacuate from that very soon to be flooded out apartment!!!!!! I would have drowned in there if I hadn't had her to come help me and get me!!!!!! Once again as usual as always with so, so very many times so, so very right on, wondrously wonderful white women have come through for me and can be counted on in an emergency!!!!!! Just goes to show that the very unfair and egregious stereotype which I've often heard as a black woman supposedly about awesome white women isn't true in saying that white women can't be counted on in a pinch and that you all cut and run in an emergency!!!!! This is such a grossly unfair and egregious stereotype of each of you as such so, so very precious white women!!!!! I for one as the black woman who I am can just attest to the fact that very, very many white women can be such loyal and loving friends and in relationships being very loving, kind, nice, sweet, goodnatured, goodhearted, sensitive, friendly, caring. and just that you all are very, very often such good people who I think so, so very highly of, Patricia!!!!!! 🙂 <3 I've have umpteen other times when you all as such wonderful white women have come through for me in a crisis!!!!!! 🙂 <3 I truly believe that my local white sisterfriend saved my life when she came and got me to help me to evacuate from that soon to be flooded out apartment because I was stranded there not being able to drive and even if had been able to drive I didn't have a car!!!!! She really came through for me, Patricia!!!!! I've even had other occasions when our So, So Very Sweet Spirit used so, so very sweet white women to bless, help me, and to save my life. Like a time back in the 90s I was choking at a restaurant when I was having lunch with one of my local white sisterfriends and she did the lifesaving Heimlich maneuver on me and saved my life!!!!!! I'm just so, so very eternally grateful to YOU, my so, so very dearest sister and friend, Patricia, and for other so, so very right on, wondrously wonderful white women!!!!!! YOU, absolutely AMAZING, Patricia, and other so, so very right on, wondrously wonderful white women are my very, very by far favorites among white people, and also my by far very, very favorites among all people in general, sisterfriend!!!!! 🙂 <3 Each of you are just the very greatest and the best, and the very, very epitome of such overall awesomeness, Patricia!!!!!! 🙂 <3

    Sister, I, too, like our Brother West have such deep love and strong, abiding memories of very, very many of my teachers growing up. I have had very, very many mainly super white women as my teachers from my nursery school in the mid-1960s and with all of my K-12 experiences growing up in the then majority white suburb of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, and throughout all of my college experiences with very, very many encouraging, emboldening, and inspirational white women as my professors, teachers, instructors, and TAs!!!!!! I've very mainly experienced being so encouraged and validated, recognized, and acknowledged by these outstanding teachers, and growing up I was always so moved and touched in my very, very heart and spirit to excel and to go to college. I was never ever told that I couldn't go to college and that I wasn't college material, sister. Experiences with racism from these stupendous teachers only sometimes happened! Frequently, I received excellent grades from my very, very many mainly white women teachers, sisterfriend, Patricia!!!!! I felt eons of Love from them with such enormous, glorious Power as Spirit used these very fine and excellent teachers to uplift and inspire me to borrow from your very right on and on point words here, Patricia!!!!! 🙂 <3 I so.. so very much love, like, enjoy, and appreciate your so chock full of such graciousness words as to how you felt every single compassionate and loving act each of us as human beings in our shared humankind and human family has offered to each other heart to heart and spirit to spirit!!!!! 🙂 < Just like you do for me, Patricia, and for so, so very many other folks who you so bless and love, my absolutely spectacular sister and friend and who so, so very much love and cherish YOU, too!!!!! 🙂 <3
    Sister, I, too, talk about welling up, and I'm welling up!!!! I just so love and appreciate your great play on words here from the great title of your latest masterpiece called, Welling Up!!!!!!! Sister, I'll for sure in my coming days and weeks, and, in fact, in all of my life continue to search for and to find whatever ways available to connect to that Power, Our So, So Very Powerful, Loving, Sweet, Good, Caring God!!!!!! You're so right, my friend, we're all for certain going to need this from our So, So Very Precious Spirit!!!! Patricia, now I'm even feeling better and brighter with even more greatly added cheer from having the joyous blessing and pleasure of reading this very inspirational and uplifting blog post article and joyfully responding with my very heartfelt, detailed, and thorough thoughts, ideas, and comments!!!!! Now I'm even more re-energized, reinvigorated, rejuvenated, and renewed being so moved and touched in my very, very heart, and my, very, very heart and spirit by your vitally urgent and important, necessary clarion call here, Patricia!!!!! Patricia, I thank-YOU and Spirit continually for YOU, sister, and for YOUR very presence in my life!!!!! YAY for YOU, Patricia!!!! YAY for all of your so full of such astute and acute sagacity blog post articles, other writings, and books!!!!! YAY for all you do in such a very fine and excellent fashion ever working in such a diligently conscientious manner!!!!! YAY for our very sisterhood and friendship, Patricia!!!!! WOW!!!!! YAY!!!!! YAY YAY YAY YAY!!!!!! Sister, please have such a totally thrilling and terrific Thursday, a wondrously wonderful weekend ahead, and may all of your very days be so, so very especially blessed, Patricia!!!!! Patricia, YOU are my life and eternal blessing For Always as I know YOU are for very, very many other persons!!!!! YOU are just the very greatest and the best and the very, very epitome of such overall awesomeness, Patricia!!!!! Spirit just so, so very much loves and cherishes YOU, Patricia, and so do I A WHOLE BUNCH, my friendsister!!!!!! 🙂 <3

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my so, so very dearly precious and awesomely special soul sisterfriend Christian Quaker white woman who you're For Always so, so very much, Patricia, with My and Spirit's Very Peace and Love For You For Always, friend of mine, and with Such Blessings and Such Very Even More Blessings For You For Always, sister of mine,

    Yours For Always soul sisterfriend Christian black woman and For Always in the very great spirit of unity and solidarity, Sherry Gordon in Iowa City, Iowa

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