Monday, July 25, 2005


Last Friday night, in Brunswick, Maine, I discovered Arundhati Roy, winner of the 2004 Sydney Peace Prize. Oh, My. What a woman.

Like many towns since 9-11, Brunswick has held weekly peace vigils. These eventually evolved into film and discussion sessions. On Friday, I sat during a thunder storm in Brunswick's Curtis Library, in a room with humongous windows flanking either side of a film screen. Screen and windows ate up one entire wall, left to right, floor to ceiling.

It was on the screen that I discovered Roy. An actress, award-winning writer, and radical peace activist, Roy lectured in the film on the topic “Public Power in the Age of Empire.”

I admit, a few times it was hard to concentrate. First, due to dashing from car to library in a deluge of rain, I was sitting wet and shivering in the building's finely-tuned air conditioning. Second, visible through the windows on either side of the screen, a flood was slowly stealing up the street. Oblivious to us and our film, cars were swimming by a few feet away from us, windshield wipers slapping at full speed, and water up to the tops of their hubcaps.

"Ever seen waves on Pleasant Street before?" the moderator asked.

Mostly though, I sat mesmerized by Roy. First of all, everything about her is gorgeous -- not only voice, mannerisms, and gestures, but also her bursting-through love for humanity.

Second, she's so smart!

Here's an Arundhati point I'm still pondering: It's not us against the terrorists, says Arundhati. It's us and the terrorists against the rich. All around the world, the rich have secretly joined hands in league against the rest of us. We've asked the rich politely to stop plundering the planet. They have not listened. In the past, demonstrations attracted media attention. Now, unless your demonstration delivers a novel slant, the media (all rich-owned) ignores you. The only sure-fire way to reach the rich, says Roy, is to hurt them -- which is exactly what terrorists are now doing.


An Arundhati quote: "Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing."

Well, now, you know this quote tickled me pink!

Go HERE to read more about Arundhati Roy.

1 comment:

Morgaine said...

That sounds like a wonderful experience! I love that quote.