Our beloved Margo passed away on the afternoon of September 2nd, 2010, in the loving, sustained care of her life partner Bill Aal and a community of dear friends near and far.

Friends at her bedside shared blessings, read emailed messages aloud, sang songs for the journey, and supported Margo as she transitioned out of this life.

Through nine months of pancreatic cancer, Margo remained active in her spirituality and social justice work, bringing her wisdom, love, guidance, and generosity of spirit to key gatherings around the country, including the pivotal U.S. Social Forum in Detroit, where she co-lead workshops with her friend and colleague Starhawk; the groundbreaking Charter for Compassion Conference in Seattle, where she lead the closing meditation; the Supporting Local Economies Everwhere annual dinner; workshops at the River Farm, and more.


6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Christina Baldwin & Ann Linnea
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 10:45:41

    Rainy Monday morning as the word of Margo’s passing comes to our house on Whidbey Island. We stand at the picture window staring into the grey-toned day, tears on the inside matching rain on the outside. We are outer-rim colleagues whose work has run parallel to Margo and Bill’s, not often crossing paths in the busyness of what we each have been determined to offer the world in the time we had to offer it. And yet, there has always been a sense of connection and support, a knowing that we are all holding steady and held within this large network of world workers–known and unknown. Over the years we have been in circle, been on the phone, been in email connection–and always Margo’s ability to be fully present with these sporadic touch-ins has been a gift. What Margo offered the world is here and cannot be taken away. We all carry her work and my greatest prayer is that she knew before leaving and knows now in even greater fullness the worth of her life. May she be dancing in the “Great Freedom.”

    Bill, what a journey for you both, and now for your going on. Love IS–drink deep of your love, even when salted with grief, for you are both in the new stages of life everlasting.
    Your sisters in the circle,
    Christina and Ann


  2. Carol Kibble
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 10:47:34

    Dear Bill,

    My heart goes out to you. I feel so honored to have known Margo for the short time that I did. She truly had a radiance in her that I’m sure is still shining. May you feel that warmth whenever you need it.

    With love,


  3. Jacque Larrainzar
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 15:16:39


    Este dia de Muertos tendras un lugar en mi ofrenda. De este ano en adelante mis abuelos y amigos te mostraran el camino a mi casa. Por que tu casa es mi casa, y ahi celebraremos la vida, la libertad y la justicia. Cantaremos Cielito Lindo y Gracias a la Vida y yo escuchare en silencio tus historias. Por que en el cielo tambien se trabaja por la liberacion. Nos vemos el 1ro de Noviembre!


  4. Mali Rowan
    Sep 21, 2010 @ 09:32:07

    Whenever I think of you in my heart I find myself pondering the life of a Sensei. The Sensei is always aware of the life force, and the delicate balance of grounding and spirit-given, or Heaven and Earth in balance, through our physical form. You have shown us mastery in walking quietly as an Aiki master does, with great condensed power and wisdom. I learned from you the art of absolute honor of one’s own life’s offering, in all forms, and wavering not on that certitude and self appraisal. You have a wonderful succinct honesty about you that was always such a breath of fresh air: you saw things for what they were. Of all the thousand things I love about you Margo, this one shines so brightly. You had a way of clearly seeing and honoring and you did it in the multi-realm balance blending our humanness with our highest selves. I love you friend, sister, colleague and I see you with Saraswati having a great chat about All Things as you dance and ride the White Swan. I bow to your life, and its continuum.
    With utmost love and respect


  5. Judith Plant
    Sep 21, 2010 @ 14:43:57

    Thanks to open hearts and good communication skills, Kip and I have known about Margo’s illness for some time though not visited with she and Bill for far too long. It’s such a shock to get the news of her passing. I’m so sad for Bill.

    I’m almost certain that the first time I met Margo was at NABC in Michigan in the mid ’80s but it could have been earlier in LA at a feminist conference. Whenever it was, I remember speaking in a circle and Margo quickly taking issue with a sloppy remark I had made about First Nations’ people. I think I used the past tense!! I felt a bit stung at the time but she was effective… making me think about what I’d said and where my remark came from. That was the first gift that Margo gave me. The next ones were essays that were included in various anthologies. The opening lines of one, “Women Weave Community,” written with Sharon Howell, so fitting for my life that I can still almost recite the words. It begins “If you suddenly became seriously ill and could no longer take care of your own needs, whom could you count on? Whom would YOU rearrange your life for, if they got seriously ill? Would their needs be met by institutions? If the banks suddenly collapsed and supermarkets closed…” And so it goes on to make a really solid case for healthy, caring communities based on enduring, dependable relationships. Margo was an engaged social change maker. Her life’s work all about the hands-on social tools of community building that we need so very much during this time of Great Turning. We don’t have Margo anymore except in ourselves, in the gifts that she spread so liberally amongst so many.

    The best gift of all, though, was her friendship. Hanging with Margo and Bill was so easy for both Kip and I… always fun and intellectually stimulating. Her passing brings so much to the surface. I am forever grateful for knowing her.


  6. Cynthia Adcock
    Oct 02, 2010 @ 09:49:32

    Dear friends, and especially Bill–
    I am so sorry to hear of Margo’s passing, and so grateful to have known her, and to know you, Bill. As I myself hit 70, the day after Margo’s transition, I become more and more aware of our generation’s passing. There is grief, but also underlying celebration of all we tried to do, all the triumphs and the heartfelt failures–that is, the seeds sown but not yet fully sprouted, and all the mistakes we made along the way, learning how to do this spiritual and political evolution.
    A few memories stand out–
    One, just a brief moment in an interfaith gathering in Seattle, when the spirit Margo affirmed was the spirit of people struggling for liberation throughout history–a brave affirmation in the context, and one for which I am thankful;
    Another, when Margo led a workshop on race as an element of inequality, for an Evergreen State College class I taught in political economy–we had some differences of viewpoint, but I remember Margo’s grace under pressure as we struggled with them;
    And a community gathering to celebrate Bill’s birthday–an afternoon when I had a chance to sit with Margo and go deeper into some commonalities we shared, including our sense of fear, of frustration, regarding the path ahead.
    Bill, I live far away now, in Arlington, VA, but I treasure the memory of times I have shared with you, including how we too wrestled with issues of race. But above all I remember the tenderness and gentleness you brought to every occasion I witnessed. May you be well, may you know the full measure of your gifts to Margo’s life, and to the common life of all beings on this planet. Should you ever be coming to the DC area, there’s a welcome mat here for you–not that you have any need of yet another. Blessed be.


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