The carbon inside you could have existed in any number of creatures or natural disasters before finding you. That particular atom residing somewhere above your left eyebrow? It could well have been a smooth riverbed pebble before deciding to call you home. You are rock and wave and the peeling bark of trees, you are ladybirds and the smell of a garden after the rain.
This commitment to rock and remake our foundations of the world must be our constant study and this is why we can never talk of school being over but only of its constant rebeginning, that ongoing commencement that we gather here, en masse, to celebrate today. In the irreducible materiality of that spirit, given in how we live and die, and in how we think and feel, let’s tarry a while with the entanglement of art, school, protest, acknowledgment and the celebration of the mass.
I’ve been letting go of the idea that we all have to get on the same page. Instead I say, let’s get on many different pages, but let them be small, intimate, authentic pages, and then let’s make those pages compelling.