love in action

MEND Season 3 - Episode 47

Taking Poetic Action with Leslie Castellano

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“Artists to my mind are the real architects of change, and not the political legislators who implement change after the fact. ”

William S. Burroughs

When it comes to leading lives of passion & creativity, we tend to believe in a set binary.

There are those of us - so we say - that are meant to write, paint, dance, create - make the world a bit more vivid and beautiful by our voice, our touch, our presence.

It is the work to which we are called to in this life.

Then, the same story goes - there are those who are meant to engage in matters of policy.  Civic discourse and dialogue. Who can best affect change at the structural, boardroom, nuts-and-bolts, dare I say, utterly artless side of cultural exchange.  

There are the artists.  

And then there are the policy makers.  

And ne’er shall the two entwine.  

They are made for such entirely different things in this life.
My guest today is someone who tosses this limited theory out on it’s head.

Leslie Castellano is a local performance artist, teacher, dancer & businesswoman - who also happens to be running for City Council - Ward 1, in Eureka, to be precise - this year.  

In this talk, we discuss her decision to venture out of her long-tenure as contributing artist to her local community to a person who is striving to affect policy, as well.

We talk about the intersection of Art & Politics.  

About shifting out of our individual and collective comfort zones to lobby on behalf of the type of world we want to live in - which sometimes means canvassing, making phone calls, and going door-to-door, rather than simply writing a song or creating a dance piece.  

At the heart of each of these impulses, Leslie states,  is a driving desire to care for people and build community.

Through her efforts as an activist, artist & community organizer, she longs to build a society where all people are valued.

We talk about where this impulse has taken her thus far and the places she’s venturing into just now.

I hope you’ll be inspired, as I am, by the work and presence of this wonderful woman.

She’s a reminder to me that even though we all have our designated comfort zones - we can step out of them.  

We can take on new roles, new languages & new possibilities to begin to mend the culture where we live.  

There is a place for ART.  For beauty & symbolism & delight.

And there is a place for re-writing laws and by-laws.  For upending the current structure and mapping out an entirely different system than the one we’ve known.

And there is a way to synthesize the two - so that together they - we - all of us - can THRIVE.

MEND Season 3 - Episode 45

Mama Bear

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Hello.  

Welcome back.  

You may notice a couple changes around here

For starters, you may have logged how it’s only 1 voice you’re now hearing at the beginning of this show - instead of two.  


Yes, this means what you think it means, my friends.


My beloved friend & co-creator Anne Fricke is temporarily stepping down from her work on this show.  

She is in a season of her life - as you will hear inside this chat I ahd with her a week back - where there is much calling for her attention and her care.

And so, after much talk back and forth, she has decided to step back for a season of this podcast.  

Doing that amazing thing that women have been taught never to do - of saying No - for this moment in time - to this tiny tributary - so that she can dive deep into the other currents, maybe even Oceans of possiblity that are waiting for her to explore.  


But I’ll let her tell you more about those.


You may have noticed that there’s a slightly different through-line for the stories we’re collecting this season.  


If I had to strip it down to one enduring thought moving forward for ths show - it would be -

What do you believe?

What truths do you hold in your innermost heart?

And what actions are you taking out there in the world - to see those truths take form?


As I’ll be doing in many of the interviews to come - I asked Anne where she feels herself called to work and serve and mend right now - and in answer, as she often does, she presented us with a beautiful poem - which I hope you’ll listen through to the end to hear - it’s - as always - a full-fledged treat.  


She references the Mama Bear - & the Mama Bobcat - and which one She feels called to be at this place and time.


Preparing to share this chat with you - which you’ll find I’ve left mostly raw & unfiltered - come as you are and take what you need - I pulled a card from my favorite deck - the Animal Medicine Cards from Jamie Sams & David Carson - and it is these words I wanted to share with you….


”This can be a very difficult power totem for you to have….

It involved lessons on the use of power in leadership.

It is the ability to lead without insisting that others follow.

It is the understanding that all beings are potential leaders in their own ways.

The use and abuse of power in a postioin of influence are part of this medicine.


If she has come to you in dreams… it is a time to stand on your convictions and lead yourself where you heart takes you.  

Others may choose to follow, and the lessons will multiply.  

The pitfalls are many, but the rewards are great.”


It is with this spirit in mind, that I am pleased and tickled and honored to present to you - this - our maiden voyage of MEND Season 3.  

Thank you for sharing the journey with us.  

As always, if you resonate with what we’re sharing here and owuld like to let us know, leave us a comment or rating in iTunes.  It boosts our visibility and lets others know.


If you have thoughts or dreams or ideas or living breathing examples of people out there in the world - doing marvelous things - drop us a line and hip us to them!  You can reach us @ mendpodcast@gmail.com


And keep showing up.

Keep listening.

Keep speaking

Keep roaring, moving & doing the work that is needed in this world.


We are so happy you are here.