photo by Kat Eng
Listen to the song of the ancients,
Grandmothers and Grandfathers
from the Old Ways.
For we are the seventh generation,
the white buffalo calf has been born,
and the time of prophecy is at hand.
On the wind, I can hear
She is calling to us
to stand for the water, the air,
the forest, the earth
and all its creatures.
What world will we leave
to the children seven generations
The Black Snake slithers across the land.
Oil spills into rivers.
Mother Earth's womb is torn asunder
Whales choke on plastic
in a dying ocean
and the two poles are melting,
week by week.
A madman sits in the throne of power
with money as his only god.
All protection is being stripped away
and men with dead eyes stalk the halls
claiming truth is false news
and outrageous lies are truth.
In our hearts, Wild Woman stirs in protest.
This is our earth, the home that we love.
You cannot threaten our children's future
without incurring our wrath.
The Grandmothers' blood runs through our veins.
Our backbones grew strong in birthing.
Our hearts know truth.
We will never believe your lies.
When it comes to our children,
we have no choice but to fight.
We are gathering in front of the White House walls
in peace, but with hearts like banshees.
We are standing by the sides of rivers
and sacred burial grounds.
We cannot turn away,
for our beloveds are buried here
and our children - and yours! -
need this water to drink.
You have dotted the landscape of our nightmares
with strip mines and oil derricks.
Everywhere are nuclear power plants
that threaten our combined existence.
And now you rattle the sabers of war
and cast eyes on our fresh-cheeked children?
No! It is Enough.
We have lived mens' ways for millennia
and look what a mess we're in.
The Grandmothers and the Mothers
and the dancing Maidens
and the strong little rainbow children
with fire in our eyes
and transformation in our hearts -
with compassion even for you men
in the halls of power,
wounded and empty,
whose dead eyes proclaim
you have never felt truly loved.
Here is a secret:
even a billion trillion dollars
will not ease that wound.
Instead, hug your sad-eyed sons
and smile - not like crocodiles -
at your unhappy wives.
Trade in your gold walls
for a chance to be real,
and let the rest of us live
This war is a holy war
of light over darkness
and truth over lies.
You have might,
but we have Right
on our side,
and wolf howls in our hearts
who will never be silent
until social justice is
the rule of the land.
Well. One can dream. This one wrote itself out of the angst of these past weeks, every day another more impossibly outrageous happening than the last. It is the Time of the Grandmothers. Time for women to stand up and move into positions where we can effect change - not just any change, but change that makes sense for the earth and its people - and for its wild places and their creatures. Time for women's wisdom to gentle the old warring way of governing the world, which clearly only begets more war and devastation.
I think of La Donna Allard who made a statement recently about being the first to stand by the river at Standing Rock and vow to oppose the creeping pipeline, "because I had no choice. My son is buried there. And millions need the water to drink." It is her land where the protectors made their stand. She had no idea how big Standing Rock would become, how the brave people who stood praying by that river through the bitter winter would move the world. And now the military forces are moving in to disband the camp. The pipeline is to go ahead, even with recent oil spills not a hundred miles away.
And now they will be imprisoned as "economic terrorists" because only money matters in this screwed up world, and the real terrorists, who are laying waste the land and waters of Mother Earth to fill their own pockets, are supported by government to do their plundering. If the planet survives, history will look back at us, aghast. We have all the information. But the system cannot wrest itself from outdated dependence on fossil fuels, though there is money to be made and jobs to be had switching to clean energy - enough to solve economic, employment and environmental problems. Sigh. We may as well be speaking to the wind right now, since the magician went poof! and made climate change disappear.
With the ugly rhetoric assaulting our ears these past weeks, I am heartened by how many are rising in response all over the world to say "this is not the world we want to live in." Showing that there are many more good hearts than warped ones on this planet. And maybe things had to get this bad to show us all that is crying out to be fixed. Women are good at mending. Let us pick up our darning needles and begin.