Berkeley. People’s Park. Sitting in the cool and wet grass with Tone, my Norwegian friend. A confidant. Still heartbreak, still grief, and longing as usual. There are people here, not a lot, and I am laid on my belly at the park’s best vantage point. We’ve got the king seat. There is some kind of music festival happening, but it looks like everyone forgot to come – only a ring of dancers and friends in front of the stage. A woman to our left. She is tripping – hard. Blonde hair with pink fading at the unraveled, dreaded ends. She is talking to someone, no one, herself. She is the only person sitting against the utility box. Her voice is horse. She has been yelling to the heavens or hell for a while now. “I’m on Coconut Island! That’s was a good movie!” Her screaming is rhythmic, almost a song. She picks up a bottle of water and pours it over her head. “I’m on f***ing Coconut Island!”.

A bald, black man dressed in white has taken the stage. His voice booms. “If you can change your thoughts, you can change your language. If you can change your language, you can change your attitude. If you can change your attitude, you can change your character. If you change your character, you change who you are. You change who you are, you change the world you live in. We are all humans. We are all the same and we can all love each other.” Mmm-hmm the crowd responds. I clap. He is right.

Is this free love or is it an absolute truth? My rationality wants to posit and place. This must be life and living. This must be that bigness. Unity. I never want to leave California.

We can change thought patterns.

People who are afraid stay the same and rot away.

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