Thursday, July 05, 2018

My metaphorical lawn

Not my lawn, the view up the hill from my
building on campus.
Today Donald Trump tried to get me (well, really all of us) behind his racist border policies by comparing the country to my front lawn.  What would you do if people were standing on your front lawn?  Thrown them "OUT!" Obviously.

Funny that.  I came home today to find a half dozen men on my front lawn enjoying the thick shade of the enormous oak tree.  One African-American man lay back against the huge oak tree, cradled between two roots, eyes shut. The others sat, mopping their faces with bandanas, water bottles in hand.

I did not shout, "Get off my lawn!"

Had they asked permission to rest there?  No.  But they were in need.  It was 100 degrees on the street, they had been out there since 7 am paving over the roadway where the new water main had been installed, and were waiting while the steamroller smoothed it down.  I couldn't turn down the humidity, but I could grant them this haven from the sun.  I was glad to see them there, in fact. Gladder still at the expression on the face of the man against the tree.

If the president thinks my front lawn is a metaphor for how we should treat people at the border, that works for me.  I'm happy to provide a safe haven for those whose lives are in danger.  So, no Mr. President, you won't find me shouting "Get out!"


  1. Michelle,
    Your post - the good part about sharing your metaphorical lawn occurred to me a few months ago - only it was midnight, zero degrees and late December . An army of persons whose native tongue was Spanish had descended outside our home, trucks lined the side of the street, kleig lights illuminating our court, gargantuan road machines performing their magic of removing and repairing a burst water main and then replacing our roadway. I brewed some coffee, piled the donated McDonalds cheeseburgers on to a tray and walked out in the night with the maelstrom of moving machinery, men shoveling black mccadadam, and women driving these humongous trucks - their fingernails painted a lively shade of pink. Through the non-stop work, the noise of dump truck's waiting in line - I offered "coffee?" - "cheeseburger? Hesitant at first and grateful for the warm coffee and food, "their smiles and their "gratsias" were such a joy to see - moments I shall not soon forget.
    Is this not communion? Long after Herod is gone, such moments of communion will continue to be shared as our nation recovers. Amen. Thank you for your post.

    1. Rob, what a powerful story of what we can bring to each other. These are the stories that give me hope. Amen.

  2. Beautiful post, Michelle, and comment from Rob. This is what I tell my American friends - that there will be recovery because the majority of the American people do not remove people in need! Blessings.

  3. I just wanted to let you know how much I loved this writing! also the comments. They give me hope.