During the 2021 Voqal Fellowship convening, Voqal was once again honored to have poet, Molina Speaks, document the meeting through a process called Live Scribe Poetics. This year’s poem reflects the cohort and the work it hopes to accomplish during its fellowship. The full poem is below.
Align and Affirm Liberation
Align and affirm,
we are on occupied land,
on the ancestral grounds
of the free and resilient,
those who shine mirrors of honesty,
truth and liberation
into the heart of a nation
breaking open. We are growing
into the fluidity of our identities,
the depths of our humanity.
In reverence to the dead,
in acknowledgment of the living,
we gather in the portals of pandemic,
in times of insurrection,
we are reaching for connection and
building the sixth sun, and
waiting patiently for our time
to re-emerge, sharpening vision,
plotting out new stories
of self, venture and future.
We embody abolition and
envision systems beyond capitalism.
We are building businesses,
organizations, collectives and language
that transcends what we have known and
who we have collectively become.
We are on, we are in, and
we are ready for some different shit
and we are not alone.
We have tools to share,
broken and hopeful peoples to connect,
social scenes and sectors to rearrange,
ancestral lands to protect,
stories of enslavement to end,
prisons to close and spirits to free,
future narratives to redesign,
technological realities to redefine,
labor rights to realize,
cultures to preserve and recreate —
an ancient future to rebuild.
WE WILL LEAD BY DROPPING GEMS.
We will take care of ourselves
and our collaborators.
We will pay ourselves for our work
and we will demand our worth.
We will build foundational models
as case studies of excellence,
constructing webs of relationship,
scaling up, leveling up, and dreaming forward.
We will reshape society,
leading without fear,
always from a place of culture,
always from a place of practice
in our daily lives, our homes,
building from radical imagination,
pushing through discomfort,
through expansive vision
rising up to who we want to be,
a constant human battle
between fear and love,
having reached a tipping point,
a survival point, a love point,
beyond collective ignorance
and avoidance of the depth of pain,
for we know too much. We have
braved too many worlds
beyond double-edged blades,
beyond extreme and false dreams
of utopia and fascism.
We replant ourselves here on planet earth,
demanding a loving, breathing home,
an ancestral tapestry of warmth,
a place where we seek
wholeness and not perfection,
a double helix dream designed
with our grit, our bones, our soils,
our flames, our waves,
our harmonies, our songs,
and our truths.
We affirm, we align, we acknowledge,
You can learn more about this year’s Voqal Fellowship cohort on our fellowships page.