Tuesday, January 20, 2009


A bright sunshine streaks the faces of the seven million people congregated in the Capitol. It is a beautiful day. In every sense of the word.

January is not supposed to be beautiful. Beauty, it seems, is an elusive thing in a cold winter, a winter made all the colder by struggle and fear, anxiety and worry. But today is a beautiful day, in spite of so much. Because today, there is hope in the eyes of all those seven million people. There is hope in the face of the man we've chosen to place in front of us. Hope is what brings beauty in even the darkest moments. Hope is what made my ancestors survive January in sod houses in Iowa in 1890. Hope is what brought my grandmother through dust bowls and starvation. Hope is what consoled my great-great grandparents when they left everything they knew in a small Norwegian fishing village to till an unknown land far from their home.

And hope is what brings my heart to my throat now, when I see the tide of people in Washington. There is much to survive still. But hope will get us there.

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