Open letter of love and struggle from the Landless Women

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Look at the sunrise! And we women are reborn with the March sun. While the people are waking up, we are already next to the fire, which slowly transforms water into coffee, pasta into couscous, rice into baião, thoughts into words and screams and struggles. We are awake.

How many times do we boil pots, take care of children, organize the yard for life, build houses of the impossible and break the silence before anyone realizes it? We plunged into the dawn, accomplices, and in fire, we stopped the death trains, the poison trucks and the planting of transgenic seeds. Muddy, we cry and bury our dead. In struggle and prayer, we strengthen ourselves to defend our bodies and our land. We prepare the ointment, the medicine, the cure from the soul. We plant resistance, under the beat of ancestral drums, which summon us, once again, to set our feet on the way. Dressed in calico, colored in a mixture of fury, fear and joy, we fight for our right to exist. Let them know it's time to shake the ground, because women in struggle will not give in! March calls us to continue forging other possibilities of existence, confronting the logic of devastation that massacres life, violating our bodies and nature every day.

Forest people have warned us for a long time that the forest is dying in flames. That land grabbing threatens indigenous peoples, quilombolas and family farming. That deforestation destroys our natural assets, that poisoned food sickens us and rots our soil. That mining and violence kill workers every day. The inequality that hurts us so much continues to determine who dies in Brazil. Who goes hungry. Who is homeless. Who is landless. Who goes to jail. Who gets in line to buy bones to feed their children. Who looks in the rubble for something that serves to start life over. Meanwhile, those responsible for this destruction are increasingly protected by privilege and laws that defend their market interests. Who goes unpunished, who never responds to disasters, who profits by turning everything into merchandise are the big corporations, rich white minorities and governments that guarantee the maintenance of this plan of misery for many and abundance for few.

We working women (peasants, peripheral, indigenous, quilombolas, immigrants, black, LGBTQIA+) bring very old marks of violence and poverty that forged relationships and culture in our society. It is not possible to accept that nowadays women are still considered inferior and treated as the property of men, suffering all kinds of aggression and being killed for it. And because we don't accept it, we face tyranny with sharing, greed with solidarity, fear with creativity, hate with joy and we thresh the corn, beans, wheat, life, as if threshing our dreams. We are interested in love, happiness and the transformation of the world! Together we will continue to build free territories, where children play happily, the community gathers in celebration and celebrates, sharing the fruits of their dignified work. Where we all have a cozy roof, backyards full of plenty, fruits, flowers, herbs, healthy food. With time to enjoy life, talking, laughter, music and poetry, a better life.

If the powerful think that we are going to give in it is because they have not realized that we are the creators, germinators of people and seeds. Where there is a woman, there can also be hope, collective organization, struggle, daring and rebellion. We have many challenges, but we will continue on the front line, because history is also ours and we will decide it on the streets, in the struggles and in the fields. Our strength comes from the many fighters who have fallen, but who live in us. They are rays of a sun that insists on rising even in times of war, a sun that shakes us and makes us seethe.

 Land, Work, Right to Exist

Women in Struggle, Will Not Give In!

National Day of Landless Women - MST

March 2022