When I call myself a gatherer, I mean that, even without my hands in dirt, I aggregate, together with collaborators, disparate pieces from an ecosystem, and develop the appropriate container for each collection. It was only when Laura Coombs pointed out the byline for the book Pleasure Activism (2019), “gathered and edited by adrienne maree brown,” that I began to see myself in the term and its use. Pleasure Activism is a gathering of ideas, stories, interviews, held together in the shape of a book. As a container, it is more than just the sum of its parts; the book is the site around which its public forms, and a place in which to gather that public.
-Mindy Seu, On Gathering
Allow yourself to sway along to this memory. Think of the last last time you shared a song with someone. The last time you glanced across the room and shared in a collective note of recognition. Drink up the feeling; saccharine and sweet. Linger on this memory, as if melting honey on your tongue.
“I am dead because I have no desire,
I have no desire because I think I possess,
I think I possess because I do not try to give;
Trying to give, we see that we have nothing,
Seeing that we have nothing, we try to give ourselves,
Trying to give ourselves, we see that we are nothing,
Seeing that we are nothing, we desire to become,
Desiring to become, we live.”
(Sent to me by my sister).