for Sarah at earthweal, where we are contemplating LAMMAS, the harvesting of grain and making it into bread. We have not tended Mother Earth's garden well, and are harvesting some painful consequences. Out of this, I do still hope humanity will rise to what is required of us.
Monday, July 26, 2021
love in every seed I sowed.
pollutants in the land and sea,
lulled by materialism
from the earth
in days we thought
would never end.
our dreams a nightmare
Saturday, July 24, 2021
"The opposite of extraction capitalism
is deep reciprocity."
- Leanne Betasamosake Simpson,
from As We Have Always Done: Indigenous Freedom
Through Radical Resistance
Once, in the long ago,
the deer disappeared from the north
where the people had been
taking them wastefully, without respect.
The deer refused to participate
in this inequity any longer.
They went elsewhere
and the people grew hungry,
and then awakened.
Today I can see in indigenous eyes
that they too are intentionally withdrawing
and resisting the settler/colonial system
that has been trying to disappear them
for three hundred years.
They oberve us with blank eyes
that turn us into white ghosts.
Their opaque expression says,
"I have removed myself
from your system
of oppression, which extracts
without giving back."
I watch with respect and admiration
their strength and power rising,
hear their true words.
Like the deer,
they are removing themselves
from the greed-crazed mamalthni,
to follow their own path
on the earth they have tended
for ten thousand years -
the earth it took we settlers
only three hundred
In fact, it feels like Mother Earth herself is removing herself from us in the only way she can, with storms and wildfires and floods. Rampant capitalism set in place the destructive path that got us here, yet it will not ease its grasp upon the coffers of the world. They will cut down what trees are left after the wildfires until there will not be a bit of cooling or oxygen left on what will then be an uninhabitable planet. It is unfathomable to me, how crazy this greed is. It is a voracious, all-consuming madness. But now the bill is coming due and who will suffer most are the marginalized and our non-human relatives. Whales are already swimming farther out to sea in search of food, in waves that are too warm. The screams of animals in the wildfires haunt my dreams. We created of a bountiful garden a hell on earth, yet believe we are the only thinking creatures. I withdraw further into silence, watching the madness unfold.
Wednesday, July 21, 2021
It is too terrible to think about, the hell we have created on earth for the beyond-human realm. And yet, as a poet friend said to me today, if we turn away, who will be left to fight for them?
Monday, July 19, 2021
When I come back, I'll be like
the herd of buffalo arriving
at Standing Rock, the natural world
rising up to stand with the water protecters
who are trying to save the river.
Water is life! the warriors said, praying
under a hail of rubber bullets.
They stood in the water in winter
and were not cold, because the river
was with them, against the militarized police
and the black snake that would bring death
to their people.
When I come back, I will be like
the white Spirit Bear, swimming from
island to island in search of food.
Already, I am growing too weak to swim.
What will still be here, when I come back?
I will come back like the unsettled spirits
at Ninstints in Haida Gwaii. When you step
on shore even now, you can hear
the keening and wailing of those
in the Spirit World, the First People
who died in distress from smallpox
brought by the colonial invaders,
only the first of their burnt offerings.
When I come back, I will rise
from a small unmarked grave,
where, long ago, another child
was made to bury me,
under the heartless gaze
of the black robes.
When I come back, may no child
ever have to live under a gaze that cold.
Now I watch the skinny black bear
wandering, hungry, across the village green;
the thin grey wolf, loping along the shore
in search of the salmon that are no more.
I see dead whales on the beach,
stomachs full of plastic and styrofoam.
Raven and Heron and Eagle -
all of their eyes are looking at me
from the tops of trees: asking
what have you done to the world
once so abundant?
When I come back, if I am human,
I will wear a cloak of shame and guilt.
If I am of the beyond-human realm,
I will be wary, hoping the Two-Leggeds
have either learned how to live with the earth
or have disappeared in the floods and fires,
the pandemics and calamities of our times.
When I come back, will the world
have stopped burning? Or will it
be ash and stagnant water, from which,
eons from now, a small green sprout
may one day hopefully appear?
Friday, July 16, 2021
Tuesday, July 13, 2021