The Corona virus and the George Floyd riots have showed sickness on many levels – from personal health, the luxury to breathe, and to the larger colonial forces still at work in wounded times. The Earth Exchange has always brought an opportunity to recognize the wounds from the environmental crisis but this year particularly with Unity week we take a stand for our world and our global society for the new world we want to built out of the old. I live in Berlin a city forced to rebuild itself once again just over thirty years ago when the wall came down in 1989. A wall that have been dividing the city for decades by the communist government of East Germany – a separate country at the time and where Berlin is located. The 90s became a time for the city to come together after the fall of the government and Germany became once again one country.

Many individuals in East Berlin tried to escape to West Berlin and were killed doing so. Ee were located at the area of the wall where many had been killed by the guards stationed there. There is a park there now, a museum and markers telling the story of the building of the wall, about the secret tunnels where many escaped, and pictures and stories of those that died trying to flee. Using the natural elements there my friend Marcelo and I built a bird of renewal and also brought Fairtrade roses which we placed in the pieces of the Wall that are there left standing. Marcelo has recently fled Brazil where he felt persecuted as an out gay man in Brazil and felt it significant to be at this place representing freedom (Mauer or ‘Wall’ Park) participating in a ritual against racism, homophobia, and persecution. We noticed and contributed to the beauty that can be found and produced in these places of historical terror.

We built our Radjoy bird and Marcelo sang peeling the petals from the rose and throwing them to the wind in honor of the lost souls in that area and all souls lost from walls that divide. The song and petals floated through the wind and hopefully with this delicate action in difficult times we generate an opportunity of grace, memory, and love.