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I want to tell you the story of the Cascadia Freedom Caravan

The Cascadia Freedom Caravan brought people from Olympia, Portland, and Las Vegas to the Tear Down the Walls National Activist Gathering in Tucson, Arizona, where over four hundred people came together to strategize on building a more unified, powerful movement for transformational change in the United States.

When I first stepped on

the bus,

it smelled of fresh wood

and potential.

As soon as the striped curtains went up,

the engine began to rumble, and

this caravan-spaceship-earthship

began flying at (no more than) 65 miles per hour,

moving (no more than) 8 miles for every gallon of fossil fuel burned

And all of a sudden each person on the bus

is no longer a stranger.

You see there’s something about this bus

It’s not just any old bus

though it began that way

It’s a boat full of revolutionaries sailing down the West coast

on the winds of change

It’s a beatnik boomerang

unearthed from the dust

of several decades

It’s a tin can full of belly laughs and flower power

Sleeping bag hippie nest

Transient traveller travellin’ fest

Though, perhaps we best

not ascribe too many titles

to what might just be

a bunch of folks on a bus who haven’t taken showers

in a while

Well, it’s a band of lucky hearts and smiling faces

on a mission South to Tucson (C uk’s on)

to tear down walls

put our heads and hands together

build a movement

for us all

Yet, there’s something more about this bus

It’s clearly not just any old bus

though it began that way

It’s a journey through time and space

Synthesis of chance and grace

watching the land roll on through the windows

days and days moving bodies

changing beings

sitting still

still the same

in and of the moment living

hour is now, but what time is it? day is it?

and where are we anyways?

Yeah, there’s something about this bus

It’s not just any old bus

though it began that way

What other vehicle sports

spontaneous acrobatic yoga

Carries old souls with young spirits

Generates living breathing hip hop beatbox

Folky string tunes on green leather bus seats

Or freestyle jams on the freeways?

Radical radiowave broadcasting expedition

documenting history in the making

making history

as we know it

We got blues in our coffee cups,

Fire in our hearts

Left some riders, gained some riders,

wheels keep moving


keep moving

and though it’s parked they’re moving, still

Truck stop smoke pot

In the middle of nowhere

Cartwheels, handstands, feet in the air

Cigarette breaks at every gas fill

Sound waves, brain waves bounce off the window sills

Some nights a bit too much booze

Sometimes soundless, in our heads, we cruise

Yes there’s this thing about the bus

It’s not just any old bus

Embodied voyage to our future

Subtle trip to the past

Remembering the road on which we travel is encompassed by the land

Living breathing spirit of the Cascadia Freedom flag

Internal rhymes mesh with

External vibrations

Like a Heart beats

Truth speaks

language of love in the air we breathe

Minds blown,

Mind blown, once again

Infinite dreams

Nomadic, it seems

Yet, true warriors fated

to come back to where we originated

See, there’s something about this bus

It’s not just any old bus

It’s a freewheeling convoy of truth seekers

whispering visions through desert whirlwinds

heads high, spirits strong with intentionality

philosophies interweaving in material reality

Insurmountable amounts of dirty socks and pbj sandwiches

Crowded with beings of sweat, blood, and dust

And the clown crown, it travels from head to head

Bus cushions, floor corners, our makeshift beds

We sleep and wake on this bus

Our destination we carry with us

No rules, we follow our own expectations

Share everything we have with no hesitations

Fearless of raw primordial expression

We listen to our instincts; learn to trust

We all suffer and dance together

In this day and age it’s consensus or bust,


See there’s something about this bus

It’s not just any old bus

Now, taste of freedom on our tongues

Inhaling and exhaling the love in the air in our lungs

Singing songs for none but our own souls

as we stoke these emerging hot rebel coals

and add kindling to this passionate fire we fan

in the Cascadia Freedom Caravan…

Nora Mahto Knutson is a radical free spirit from South Minneapolis with roots settling into the earth of this town called Olympia, She is a writer, spoken word artist, activist, and much more…


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