Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Fulfilling the Dream


I have a confession.

For six years I have toted a poster around with me on airplanes, boats, buses, cars, shuttles and taxis all the while earnestly intending to frame and hang it. For the most part, however, my poster has lived in the backs of closets and drawers in at least seven different dwellings using the aforementioned modes of transport to get to said homes.

It's a little bit beat up, somewhat wrinkled and has yellowed considerably... but friends and neighbors, the poster FINALLY made it behind glass and onto the crumbling wall of my apartment today and THAT is cause for celebration. Shot of Diet Coke anyone?

Clearly it isn't just any poster. It wouldn't be. Otherwise, would I have diligently and stubbornly held onto it across continental divides for this long? I should think not.

I bought it back in 2000 while visiting a close friend in Atlanta. We were in Auburn, a not-very-white city neighborhood, visiting Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthplace and burial site. My friend, her husband and I were the only whites on the tour and at the gravesite. Where were my fellow fair skinned brethren that day? Maybe opting for the CNN building tour instead.

The poster, as you probably surmised, is the text of the renowned I Have A Dream speech. I bought it at the gift shop out of a sense of needing to cling onto the feelings of timeless eminence experienced that day.

If you've never listened to or read the full speech, I highly recommend it. G'head. It's important.

3 comments:

Savtadotty said...

Coincidence? Today's NY Times has an article about a play based on M.L.King's life and writings. In Beijing!
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/30/world/asia/30beijing.html

sistamar said...

Wish the years had changed the complexion balance at King's boyhood home and 'hood. They haven't. And I might know. The ONLY place I take visitors besides the DeKalb International Farmer's Market and the Atlanta Botanical Garden is Sweet Auburn -- truly a gem of Atlanta. Why oh why do non-Black people think that MLK Jr. is not their hero mystifies and saddens. I can't wait to visit your poster, and to salute this giant of courage and compassion. And when I think of King, another giant of courage and compassion and fellow theologian and marcher from Selma to Alabama comes to mind. Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, who said, marching alonside his ally King that "my legs were praying." Thank you, Stephanie, you gave me an idea. I have an Israeli friend staying with me, and will propose a trip to Auburn Avenue before he sets sail for HLC in two months. Perhaps he, too, will be inspired to visit your poster.

Stephanie said...

Dot: Complete coincidence. Remember we discussed Jung's Synchronicity writings?
Tamar: I'm with you and thought of you while blogging this one, knowing you've been there and share the sentiment...Tell your friend he/she is welcome to drop by for poster/coffee. slf