Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Run, River, Run




For thousands of years, 
they lived in harmony with the earth,
taking only what they needed, 
ensuring most was left,
so future generations might live.
Unto the seventh generation is  tribal law:
in the making of all decisions, consideration is given
to the effect on descendants 
seven generations in the future.

They have watched with horror
the post-contact extinction, destruction, 
devastation, decimation, of wildlife and habitat,
thinking the white man mad for money,
even at the cost of his own
 - and all creatures' - survival.

Now, at the brink of planetary systemic collapse,
it is the indigenous people who will show us the way
to live in harmony with the land and all creatures,

maybe even ourselves.


for Susan's prompt at Mid Week Motif: Sustainability. I wrote two horribly depressing poems before discovering, this morning, an item in the local news about a former First Nations Chief, Judith Sayers, of the Hupacasath First Nations, who led her tribe to oppose a natural gas system being developed in Port Alberni, due to concerns about emissions. She looked around for an alternative renewable,  clean-energy source of power, and a run-of-river hydro project is now up and running.

"Run-of-river is a relatively simple technology. You divert a part of creek that has a big elevation change into a pipe. You run that pipe downhill to a powerhouse where you spin a turbine with the force of the water and generate electricity." explains Green Energy Futures. The project depends on a good snowmelt, and rainfall. The valley is feeling the effects of global warming, with less snow-melt and rainfall in recent years. But it is heartening to see intelligent people turning to renewable and clean energy sources, since governments and corporations show little interest in doing so, despite the benefits to all that would occur.

Imagine the employment created by development of clean energy across the nation, across the planet? And the benefits to Mother Earth and humankind if this was wide-scale? Some of us have been saying this for 35 years. (They thought us lunatics back then.) That is when we should have been beginning. But better late than never. And First Nations is leading the way, at least in the Alberni Valley. Yay!

17 comments:

  1. Come to think of it! Reinventing the wheel, shades of it perhaps. If it is for the overall good, why not? Great for bringing it out in the open Sherry!

    Hank

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  2. Indeed.. the wildlife is at risk what with man's absurd greed for wealth. Loved these lines:

    it is the indigenous people who will show us the way
    to live in harmony with the land and all creatures,
    maybe even ourselves.

    Beautifully executed :D
    Lots of love,
    Sanaa

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  3. Thanks for the infor as well as the poem. I'd love to see the other poems, too. I just finished reading "Pushing the Bear" by Diane Glancy about the Trail of Tears, so I am in raw amazement that any survived white intrusion. Your poem touches the gifts survivors of first nations still give in being earth guardians. Run, River, Run. Thank you.

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  4. the lines flow with much hope to help us breathe in this atmosphere of destruction and devastation and thanks for the inspiring video...

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  5. A very heart touching poem with a lot of hope in it. Loved reading it :)

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  6. I say "Yay" too. There are many big and little projects going on in the world trying to be kinder to it. Your poem made me happy.

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  7. You've made a hopeful poem out of what so often seems like a hopeless situation. Thank you x

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  8. very interesting video and i luv the poem

    much love...

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  9. we need the innovations of those who love the land rather than those who look at the ability to monetize from it.
    I like you wrote a few poems that were too downward bound.

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  10. Sadly it is not the end result that matters but the greatest profit for the backers. Full marks to the first nation people for their efforts. Now how can we convince the interlopers?

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  11. There is indeed an irony in the fact the 'we' will probably end up asking advice from the people we stole the land from who wisely knew it wasn't theirs to steal...

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  12. I like this and the back story as well!

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  13. It would be a good rule to follow.

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  14. Sherry,
    I've always believed that the First Nations peoples and the elders in our lives, had the great wisdom, which we may have benefitted from respecting much more. They had a basic respect for all the gifts from the earth. Water, nature, animals, stars and the power of individuals, gifted. Instead, as your rightly point out in your poem, greed and wrecklessness has damaged so much, forever..The river project makes so much good sense.
    Eileen

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  15. Wow! What a successful project! Thank you for sharing, and what an example of nature working with humans and them taking care of river!

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  16. Good that these things can still be achieved. We must all shout loudly enough in support of these intelligent voices, that they may be heard!

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  17. Yes, indeed, Sherry. Old wisdom is needed during these modern days of folly. I am reminded of Chief Seattle's words: "Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect..."

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I so appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.
Thank you so much. I will be over to see you soon!