Friday, July 2, 2010

Little Afternoon at the Edge of Little Sister Pond


As for life,

I’m humbled,

I’m without words

Sufficient to say

How it has been hard as flint,

And soft as a spring pond,

Both of these

And over and over

And long pale afternoons besides,

And so many mysteries

Beautiful as eggs in a nest,

Still unhatched

Though warm and watched over

By something I have never seen-

A tree angel, perhaps,

Or a ghost of holiness.

Every day I walk out into the world

To be dazzled, then to be reflective.

It suffices, it is all comfort-

Along with human love,

Dog love, water love, little-serpent love,

Sunburst love, or love for the smallest of birds

Flying among the scarlet flowers.

There is hardly time to think about

Stopping, and lying down at last

To the long afterlife, to the tenderness

Yet to come, when

Time will brim over the singular pond, and become forever

And we will pretend to melt away into the leaves.

As for death,

I can’t wait to be the hummingbird,

Can you?

I awake today in Edmonton Canada, attending the International Congress of Conservation Biology. Last night I arrived to streets thronged with pedestrians on their way to see the firework display that began at 11 p.m. (the sun sets very late this far north). The day was Canada Day, similar to the U.S.A.’s July 4th celebration. This day, 143 years ago, Canada became Canada. Such a huge celebration it was to celebrate difference, distinction, and tribal affinity. I bristle with emphasis on nationalism, however is Canada love like USA love, like Africa love, like Iraq love? Are we already each of us everyone else? So if I smile at waving white and red flags with the Canadian maple leaf on it, is it not the same as my dazzlement at hummingbird and flower? I can’t wait for the world to be in awareness of this wondrous internconnection, but wait, aren’t you already? I don’t want to pretend that it takes physical death to become you, I’m ready now to die to the false believe that we aren’t bonded in love. Francis David, a 16th century Unitarian theologian in Transylvania said, “we need not think alike to love alike.” And we need not swim, crawl, hop, fish, hatch, or die alike to love alike, or to be loved alike.

What’s keeping us from seeing the love that bonds and binds us to one another

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