Comments or questions are welcome.
Steve Wilson ENTHEOS Seabeck WA 98380-1089 (360) 434-1347
Dignity Villagers, self-governing, recycling innovators:
Dignity Village, 9401 NE Sunderland Ave., Portland, OR 97211 (503) 281-1604, dignityvillage.org
Unemployed, underemployed, homeless…alumni of the ‘middle-class’. Hundreds of thous…No, it’s not statistics. It’s people: It’s Ben: “When you don’t have, a bed and a roof is a precious gift.” It’s Jon Boy: “On this 123’ x 294’ piece of asphalt we built 42 homes with recycled building materials, about twenty bucks a square foot. It was absolutely impossible, but WE DID IT.”
It’s Dean: ”Now I’ve got four walls to come into.” and Tonya: “In the dumpster I found Thesaurus…cool words, but no story. I made a story for Thesaurus.” and Dave: “My life wanted more than a blip…something society couldn’t provide. If not, I’m failing together with those ‘more-than-my-share-is-my-share’, with those ‘profit-tops-humanity’, with those ‘divisive-language-rules’.
Loud voices we hear, the gentle we ignore.” and Ben again, “…they do good work which equals we do good work which means I am a part of something that makes a difference. On my small scale, every breath is a miracle and doing good work paradise.” Upside-down people turning themselves right-side-up. Sharing their years of Village success invites broad readership. Ben said, “I think the word ‘humanity’ applies here:”
Street People, panhandlers to performance artists, often hungry, often flying signs:
Face-to-face only, no numbers, no phone – city center sidewalks, on-ramps, intersections.
It’s Jeana: “I am poverty. It’s a life I’ve shit for myself.” It’s Pat, “If I had any talent I wouldn’t be here.”It’s down-but-not-out humility; unaffordable humanity out-sourced, down-sized, divorced, foreclosed, in parks, in alleys, in shelters and tent encampments. It’s alcohol and drugs, desire and depression, hate stories and love stories, standing in lines, working the dumpsters, wives peeing behind bushes, kids sleeping under bridges, unanswered screams…and suicides.
“It’s our poems and notebooks and diaries…and your clippings and legal documents.”
Nina Noble Design
book and web design: