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Wake up, America! This is that day. The day that seemed so far away when women took to the streets across the nation following Donald Trump’s “American carnage” inauguration. The day that seemed as if it might never arrive as Republicans donned their red hats and fell in line behind a man who praised “very fine people.” The day shrouded by the smog from leaving the Paris agreement, and threatened by a different sort of cloud at the breaking of the Iran Treaty. The day that seemed as if might never arrive.

Wake up, America! Remember them as you do. Waiting for this day we lost Elijah, and John, and Ruth. And George, and Breonna, and Marielle and a thousand more in just four years. And 250,000 more who died from weaponized incompetence and deliberate neglect. They cannot vote for themselves, and we cannot vote for them. But we can remember them as we make our own marks on this day,

Wake up! Daylight is burning, or will be soon. The business of democracy, and renewal, and hope  is at hand. Let’s get to it.

It’s understandable that the day is met with anxiety as well as eagerness. We are all that child who reached for a treat, and found instead a hot burner. Now we’re reaching again.

It’s a test. A leap of faith. A gom jabbar. When our feet touch down, and our hands emerge unburned, we will celebrate.

Be hopeful. Be happy. Be prepared and patient and persistent. It’s that day.

”I said to dawn, Be sudden; to eve, Be soon.” — Francis Thompson, The Hound of Heaven

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.

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