Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Our Ecological Footprint

CBC News just released the World Wildlife Fund's Living Planet Report, which states the world's wildlife, some 3,000 species,  has had their populations cut in HALF since 1970 - due to "unsustainable human consumption". 

Canada ranks #11 on the list of the most voracious. The report states in order to continue the rate of consumption occurring today, if everyone lived like a North American,  the planet would have to be three and a half times bigger than it is. They say we have ten short years before the tipping point.

The worst affected are freshwater species, who have lost 76% of their populations.

I tried to post the news clip here but it wouldnt cooperate. You can find it here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/wwf-report-global-wildlife-populations-down-by-half-since-1970-1.2782031

Extremely depressing.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Ninotaziz's Book Launch

Kids, from my earliest days online, when I fortuitously found Poets United, thanks to Robert Lloyd, (to whom I will be eternally grateful), Ninotaziz has been a constant encourager, supporter and loving friend of mine. This week is a big one for her. Over the last few years, Ninot has brought out a series of books preserving Malaysian legend, a passion of hers, and this week she is Going Global with her latest book!

Today Ninot's novel, NAGA, hits the global audience, and I had to hop on board to share the excitement. The book will be launched simultaneously  in Malaysia, Australia, India, USA, Canada, Singapore, Indonesia and Philippines. 

The plot is as follows: A princess under a curse. A sleeper assassin. A young sorcerer.Three people’s destinies intertwine and forever change the fate of the ancient city of Nagara.

Sri Gemom is born in a time of change. She is whisked away to Bhumi Semenanjung from her royal parents and her city of Nagara for her protection. While she is gone, a coup forces the king off the throne and he is killed, while the queen is forced to marry the usurper. Nagara is slowly falling apart. Sri Gemom is facing her own losing battle, and the people who love her must come together to save the city of Nagara, or see it lost forever. 

Sounds like a very topical plotline! Check out this cool book trailer:

You can find Ninot's release info here. Congratulations, Ninot, you are blazing a trail in the pursuit of your dream to preserve Malay legend, and all your hard work is coming to fruition as you move into the global market. 

Poet Eyes


What is a poet to do
with a gray rainy day,
when gauzy wisps shroud the mountains,
raindrops trickle down the windowpane,
dogs nestle in their dog beds,
and the world basks in wetness?

Let's look through
our magical poet eyes:
small particles of moisture rise up, 
 are transformed,
and then return as rain.
The clouds mesmerize as they
wrap shawls around the mountains.
The trees tip back their heads, drinking deeply,
after a parched-throat summer.
The grassblades loll about, replete,
having finally drunk their fill.

And the leaves? most magical of all,
changing from their staid summer green 
into ribald, dressed-to-kill matrons,
giving one last blast of slay-them-in-the-aisles
orange and gold and red
before toppling off their perches.

A poet on an ordinary autumn day
can look through poet eyes
and watch the magic, 

Friday, September 26, 2014

A Breadcrumb

Indigo Child,
you with stars and planets in your eyes,
you with the whole sky dreaming in  your face,
you, beloved of the wind
and grandchild of the sun,
what do you Know
that the rest of us,
less blessed, can barely grasp?

Tell us, so we can save this planet
from imploding into itself
in sheer despair at the stewardship
of we humans-of-little-brain.

You do not understand.
You think you are powerless.
You think things 'just happen' to you,
oh me, oh my.
You think war, poverty, chaos, inequity,
the Way Things Are
is the way things have to be,
the way it's always been,
outside of your control,
the System cannot change.

Here is a breadcrumb:
your life did not just "happen" to you.
You were, even when you didn't know it,
making choices,
even when you chose not to choose.

Governments, the military-industrial complex, 
the financial power brokers,
all are making choices too: 
to maintain the chasm (money) between rich and poor,
to choose oil (money) instead of climate health,
war (money) instead of peace,
money instead of what is right.

A breadcrumb, my dear hamster-wheel humans,
spinning out your desperate, frenzied lives,
knowing - KNOWING - life should be so much more than this:
align yourself with spirit and justice in every single interaction, 
and demand your governing bodies do the same.

The secret you both know and -
with every fibre of your being
do not want to know-
is that the power you think lies elsewhere
has always been
in you:
the Power of Choice.

posted for Herotomost's brilliant prompt today at Toads: Trolling the Cosmos for Breadcrumbs, the title alone surpassing anything I can find to write. Wowzers, Corey! Brilliantissimo!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

When Women Had Wings

Space Flight wallpaper by
Tobias Roetsch of Germany

I am daughter of Renee,
who is daughter of Florence,
who is daughter of Julia
of County Cork.
I come from a line
of strong-spirited women.

Far back, in the time 
when women had wings,
my foremothers flew.
They sat in council, governing,
around the communal fire.
Their eyes flashed; their utterances
were wise, and respected.
In those times, the waters ran clear,
and the land was bountiful.

In the crooning of the wind,
I hear the names this life has given me:
Walks Far Woman,
Woman Who Talks to Trees,
In Love With the Sea Woman and
Daughter of the Sky.

Part of me has not yet
fully landed in this place.
My DNA still remembers we come from
particles of stars.
My collective memory recalls those times,
when women had wings,
and my foremothers flew,
when living with the land
is what we knew.

for Susan's Mid-Week Motif prompt: Heritage Day

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Message to a Young Warrior Woman

I know the journey
you are making, for I, too, have walked
pain's pathway.
Know this: the route will make you strong.
As you grow, your warrior woman
will arise.
(She is waking now.)
Your warrior power has been dampened,
but not extinguished,
by those unable to see
who you are.
One day, little bird,
you will fly.

Right now you are at the end of the branch,
contemplating the sky,
wondering what soaring 
might feel like.

Gather the air under your wings, little bird,
and, when you feel ready, lift off,
trusting the sky
to carry you.

But always remember:
the longest journey that
we ever make
is the one between
our heads
   and our hearts.

A wise medicine man once said to me: "Your greatest pain is your strongest medicine". And he was right.

Friday, September 19, 2014

A Nice Mouse Stew


Witch Hazel rode to town
on a water buffalo.
(you may frown, 
but she couldnt find a Puffalo)
she was looking for  ingredients
for a nice mouse stew,
six fat brown ones she already slew
(the stew might taste better if we never knew)

But the greengrocer 
was out of eye of newt and leather boot
and the toe of frog/tongue of dog
looked rather hoary.
(you may be pleased to know,
my poet friends,
that even though it rhymes
this is not a true story)

Undaunted, she got up upon her broom
(The cat moved over, gave her plenty room)
She took a turn through spiral forest green,
gathering furry fronds and splattered spleen,
selecting just a few delectable bats
wearing an assortment of delicious purple hats,
hastening home, salivating, fast 
in anticipation of a most tasty repast.

But the bats clung to the pot-lid
and refused to Enter In
and how was she to make a stew,
if stew would not Begin?

She freed the bats
and fed the cats; 
she made a salad green
and now she's out 
dancing about -
to hell with haute cuisine!

for Tony's fun prompt at dVerse: nonsense poems. I just happened to have one in drafts, who'da thunk it? I did expand it a bit, but was happy to have an idea ready to go.