When I think of Occupy I think of filling in something, a void, ¬†with interest. I have been involved with the Occupy Portland movement since it started in Oct. I had/have the good fortune of broadcasting on a local community radio station ¬†(KBOO.fm) at the Occupy site. Many people came to the mic to express their reason for being involved in the movement. Most would say they had no future, had nothing to lose, were at the end of their luck, couldn’t think of any more foot work they could do to pull themselves out of a foreclosure, etc. I saw and heard many sad and angry people at that mic. People ranging from the homeless, the addicted, the mainstream tax payer, men, women and children at the mic with the same message. The message was one of empty space needing to be filled in. The empty space was created by gross injustice. These people took the courage to fill the space with Occupy. A very important movement.

I have found that empty spaces can be filled, must be filled. Something like ‘God itself abhors a vacuum’ I know that poetry, art, music, stories, color—all this can make the emptiness a better place to be. Creative expression is a birthright and must be exercised. And exercised it was at Occupy every day. Those magic, active, important days in Portland, Oregon continue to unfold as social justice finds it place in the lives of creative people. One thing I remember saying as people shared their stories—“Stay curious and keep moving.”

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Grace E. Reed

I have a MA in Conflict Resolution, a BA in Drama Therapy am a mediator, published writer (Negotiating Shadows and Needs) a broadcaster for KBOO.fm radio on disability awareness. I work with street youth, the homeless, addicted people, and have been a social activist for over 35 years. Occupy WS Portland, Oregon is a passion. Eagles World Studio is up and running. My heart responds to poetry and my head hears it in everything I do. My motto is 'stay curious, be kind and keep moving'. My new book 'Negotiating Shadows: Journey to the Sun' published by George Ronald Publisher, Oxford England and available through my website.

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