by K.W. Poole ©2017
Music, like people, exists in diverse forms, shapes, movement, styles, rhythms and sounds. Saturday, the music of our city manifested in the form of feet. Feet with a purpose. Feet with a message. Feet with unity, peace and love. An inspired gathering of the women of Music City and the music of women country-wide; for women were represented by mothers, grandmothers, sisters, brothers, fathers, grandfathers, friends, neighbors, strangers, adults, teens and children alike. There was no gender on this day. No ageism. No racism. No sexism. We the people spoke together, peacefully, collectively and without borders. This is the sound of not just tolerance, but acceptance. This is the music of UNITY resonating across The United States of America.
As Cilene, (President of WMMW,) and I crossed the Korean Veterans Bridge toward Cumberland Park the air was filled with strength. We stopped to photograph, to exchange words with our Nashville neighbors and even to laugh. The first sign we encountered brought on an odd sense of joy, it read: “Free Melania.” This sentiment in its simplicity speaks volumes. A First Lady whose voice I have yet to hear.
The view from the bridge was empowering, as people cascaded the length of the pedestrian bridge and filled in every ounce of space in Cumberland park. It brought to mind the side-by-side photographs of the Inaugural attendances that continue to make a comparative statement across social media and the news at large. Trump is not taking into account that the social media - he utilizes with such frequency - leaves a bigger footprint than even his unfathomable mark will be upon the environment. It’s here. It’s clear. And we do not fear. Hey Mr. Cellophane* we see right through you.
But back to the moment at hand…pure beauty. All around the country - and our diverse world at large - others were engaged in delivering the same message. The signs, slogans and voices rang out like chimes of freedom.** Our steps in sync driving the beat of the collective drummer. There were women with Bodhrans, creating our pulse with an energetic cadence; cheerleaders encouraging the crowd to join their message; chants, buzzwords, and mantras shared by all and tunes wafting through the air. “Who run the world? Girls!”*** A particular favorite of the day.
As we descended the bridge beginning the walk toward our city plaza, I called out to the Hispanic builders working hard, constructing the renovation/addition to The Big Machine building on Third Avenue South - “Hey Guys!” We held our fingers up in the symbol of Peace and Victory and cheered - they returned the sentiments. And it rang out amongst us, as it did all day, the vocalized announcement: “I thought I was done with protesting this shit in the 60s.” Apparently we still are not learning from history. But we are giving it our best shot as noted by the fiery delivery of Pat Benatar resounding out around us: “Hit me with your best shot. Fire away!”****
Even Carrie Fischer - her force ever with us - in true Princess Leia form attended in the form of resistance slogans. A woman held a sign stating she wished her female parts shot bullets so the government would not regulate them. Yes that was a sign. A Sign O’ the Times.***** What would Prince think? High fives and fist bumps were dolled out for slogans including: “My middle schoolers are smarter than DeVos;”“Don’t Blame Me, I Voted for Hilary;” and “Love trumps Hate.” The slogans were endlessly inspiring.
No matter who, no matter where, the message on Saturday was clear:
To our newest EMPLOYEE in the White House. Welcome to the South (and might I add, all across the United States of America.) On January 21st, more people attended the world-wide marches than attended your inauguration. This is not an “alternative fact.” Stop tweeting. Do not shut your doors, for you do not own that house. It belongs to the people of the United States of America. We come in all shapes, sizes, genders and pigments. We are strong and we have a unified voice. We raise it above your tweets and bullying. If you grab, we will grab back. Watch your step. Because you do not want to hear the words you yourself made #famous: “You’re Fired.”******
Credits: * Mr Cellophane written by: Joel Grey & Rob Fisher : **The Chimes of Freedom written by: Bob Dylan : ***Run the World (Girls) written by: Beyoncé Knowles - Terius "The-Dream" Nash - Wesley Pentz - David Taylor - Adidja Palmer - Nick van de Wall :****Hit Me With Your Best Shot written by: Eddie Schwartz (Immortalized by Pat Benatar) : *****Sign O’ the Times: Prince/Paisley Park/Warner Bros. :