The Great Movement

Amy Grace Lam


I came into the world to bear witness to the suffering of humanity.
For there is great suffering in the world.
And yes, the world has been unjust to the just.

But one thing I have learned is that with time EVERYthing changes.
Just as the seasons and years and decades change.
So do our tides.

And we progress. And evolve. And shift.
Not in one fell swoop.
But on the backs of the change in each one of our hearts.

Change is in each one of us. In the small moments when we say:
Yes, I see you. Yes, you do exist.
We do not need to be MLK Jr., Malcolm X, or even JFK.

Nor Dolores Huerta, Yuri Kochiyama, did you know
Grace Lee Boggs said that evolution is our revolution
and change is in each one of us.

And the great movements start
with the moment of one small shift in you
that makes a shift in me that ignites a flame in her

that shifts the entire world.
These shifts start with moments we have made together.
Moments that bring our souls together.

A smile to a neighbor.
A dollar to a stranger.
An afternoon conversation at the corner store bodega.

And with each touch between you and me,
our movement will grow bigger, don’t you see?
A caring shoulder to cry on.

A witness to my pain.
The gluten-free carob chip cookies you baked.
And yes, that wonderful 3-mile walk around the lake.

That’s what movements are made of.
We reach and we heal.
We meet and we feel.

We give our tries and our let’s.
Our hearts, hopes, and sometimes even our best.
Yes, movements are made on the backs of love.

A love for you and love for me.
Of course, it is the love for our children that sets us free!
We are the movement and the movement is we.

And yet what the movement really asks
is for me to be me and you to be you.
And in our struggle to set this whole wide world free,

we find that the answer from the universe is…
First child
you must set yourself