There is a mighty sound in this country today.
When I came out of the poll, walked back to my car and prepared for the second hour to an hour and a half-long drive that day back to school, I settled into the seat and rain started to fall and I turned the stereo on to the second disc of this
. As the last ten seconds of Man Bites God wound down, Could've Moved Mountains came on, and I turned it up so I could hear the soft intro and forgot it set so very loud as I turned onto the blue route to come home. In the far left lane doing eighty to get back in time to be of any use volunteering around campus I listened as the dark rumble of the bass shook the tiny confines of the car under me, made it tremble up my ankles, low in my belly and deep in my spine as it welled up high and thick in my throat. It swelled and ebbed as the soaring swoop of the high violins curled around the base of my skull and pressed in behind my eyes until all I could do was arch with it and laugh and find that I was weeping as the soft rolling crack-boom of the thunder of the storm into which I was driving echoed the music, sinking into my bones.
I felt the exact same thing tonight as I stood in Thomas Great Hall as Barack Hussein Obama was declared the President-Elect and a hundred hundred voices in this place all rose up as one and screamed
with ecstasy and triumph and the knowledge of the power of will. I vibrated
with it, I raised my hands and breathed it in and I laughed
, crying, unstoppable and sharp with joy as feet stomped and shook the floor under me, as throats sang and shook the air.
I felt it again in the wonderful, thunder-slide, Baptist-preacher cadences of our new President's voice as he gave his acceptance speech at midnight, the wetness in his eyes and the clear, steadying tone of his voice standing out against a sea of damp cheeks and grave, hopeful faces in Chicago, and a huddled group of damp cheeks and grave, hopeful faces in a tiny living room in Rhoads dorm on Bryn Mawr College's campus.
I will never forget what happened here today, on this campus, at my home, in this country. I will never be able to hear that song again without getting choked up. I cannot recall the last time I was this happy.
Yes, by God, you'd better believe we can.