Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

This time a solitary wren perches on
power lines that divide purple-blue sky,
slicing rhombi, diamonds, thin rectangles,
pushing geometry into a regular autumn
morning. This makes you wonder how birds
keep their feet warm in countries with no
power, or how people survive on a hundred
bucks a year, or where refugees go when war
hits. Our wren flies, a speck, ever smaller
as she finds her way. Given our superior
brain capacity, how is it we cause misery
across the planet while creatures so small
live, content to take their share peacefully?

 

 

Copyright, Doug Stuber, 2006.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Iroquois Poem

Iroquois Poem

A sea of birches between farms,
Sanctuary in white.
Away from streets, the crowds, alarms,
Here squirrels and birds in flight.

The forest, innate beauty everywhere,
City dwellers breathe disease pollution,
So we cut each other’s throats, as air
Requires thyroid cancer solution.

The dirge is decades long:
Plastic countries float.
No one hires the jobless throng
To clean it up by boat.

Or live a life without the stuff
Both profitable and convenient.
What bravery it takes to call the bluff
To live in thanks, with knee bent.

Not behind a pew in church
But out where the blue ridge calls,
Swim in the lakes, canoe in search
Of striders, Bash Bish Falls.

Vanishing wilderness calling out
Destroyed in many ways.
How to stop the money louts
Who control both night and day.

“You can’t have fun without spending
Lots of fuel and alcohol money.”
Without cash, misery never ending,
Left out of social lives, not funny.

So we slave in plants that add
To the natural decline.
End up in debt, if we only had
Stayed with our plow, the time

Spent working land would lead
My son and others to know how
Creation is meant to be.
Oh, what will we do now

That to live a natural life
Is too hard to do.
Now farmers commit suicide
With patented seed bills due,

Even those who work the land
Must ante-up to rotten banks.
Join us outside globalized bands
Bow down, give the creator thanks.

 

Copyright, Doug Stuber, 2014.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Water

Water

One more walk, rain, walk
But this time the sprinklers that
Never stop watering sidewalks
Stop. Eight hundred fifty seven
Trips by these sprinklers, which
Water the sidewalks at a school
That, moneyless, blows $85 M
Per annum on Public Relations and
Administration, finally yields a view
Of recalcitrance: black tubes
Back into the earth in the middle
Of a rain. It doesn’t stop blonde
Hair from being tossed back, or
Bikes from hitting pedestrians, or
Green sports coats, yellow ties from
Entering business classes. But the hope
That one day someone will shut
Off the lights at the pool glimmers
In the minds of the living.

Water II

No Bananafishing today J.D.
Just another scrap of laughter
In the middle of one hundred
Days-in-a-row of living death.
Almost no one is right anymore.
Money is the orgasm, orgasms
Are inhibited by AIDS, AIDS
Keeps the population down un-
Naturally, so why go to war?
War feeds the rich, the rich feed
Themselves. Hockey players buy
Raytheon, Raytheon builds Patriots,
Patriots kill when ordered to
But feel bad when they realize
A hundred thousand “men-in-sheets”
Running away have been shot down.
Bush buries a dog that died
From drinking water that never
Became a priority on Capitol Hill.

Water III

Blue is no longer good enough
To squelch the ugly feelings
That persist through fog’s insistence
In the pastoral green suburbs of
Alachua County Florida. Services
To farmers will now be discontinued
As the city merges outward to
Expand its fading tax base. The
Poor, if they are downtown, will
Not get better schooling because
The real problem, of course, is law
And order. The recent (1990)
Attempts to form gestapos have
Only been denied by the narrowest
Of margins. Barbara, your husband
Is a fascist. So please don’t drink
The water, unless it’s jugged in
Plastic which keeps the Exxon
Floating down a waterway near you.

Water IV

Execution replaces caring in
Societies gone mad, where the
Idea of rehabilitation threatens to
Take away the jobs of racist police
Pretenders who offer few excuses
For their deeds, so often brutal.
But if L.A. and Mammy think the
Problem is lack of order, wait ’til
They find themselves without drinking
Water. The business of water is
Clearly Canadian, a group that owns
The rights to sell, in moderation,
Water from the north. For now its
Fancy Cola, but soon this rare
Commodity will falsify A. Smith.
Chicago will have it listed on the
B.O.E., and drinkers everywhere
Will be beholden, as farmers
Are today, to the trading pits.

Water V

The light gray elm remaining
Is dark, it rains today.
Smug tie-dyed pseudo-philosophers
Prance in the warmth of winter,
Believing nature’s last gasp a fun
Time. Explain why cars get less
Than 100 MPG. Explain why trains
Have been usurped by trucks and
Japanese MPVs. Listen to yourself
Justify the oil glut and go off
To die for someone else’s greed,
As the shinning path demolishes
One more village while quick
Decisions earn millions in less
Than pristine Salomon accounts.
How do you like the fact that
Everything’s a lie? “The battle is not
Between Democracy and Communism,
But Democracy and Capitalism.”

Water VI

Here, at the school where once
Every six years the sprinklers go
Off, you can get suspended for
Practicing the right to free speech:
Expelled for persisting to do so.
The idea that a university would
Founder free-thinking is too much
Under the mercury umbrella of
Late-century conservatism. If
Water makes it to 2050 then
Jump for joy and laugh at the
Whining contained herein. But
Don’t expect all-correcting nature
To save it for you. The idea of
Bringing children into this is repulsive.
Save your relationships some other way!
When water prices fluctuate at the
Whim of investors, you’ll see how
Dear the price of living can get.

 

Copyright, Doug Stuber, 1990.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Armistice is Only Words Away

Armistice is only Words Away

Red and yellow leaves smash above remaining green
On brittle trees stressed by drought.
The fall crop grows together from fear.
War ruins the party here, starving refugees move out.

Warm sun parches grass to dust in Chapel Hill.
Light kills. News disrupts gentle walks.
Two thousand one claims close lives, no way to hide
The reign death’s image starts with superficial talk.

Peaceful winds entice lovers bent on keeping war at bay.
Rice is blown to bits, extreme starvation, war means war.
The dissidents’ Gulag hut awaits activist Americans,
And “your flag decal won’t get you into heaven anymore.” 1

Three deer caught in lights that look like monster’s eyes.
Nature, fraught with tarmac, endures another “bombs away.”
Scream , young angst poets. Wipe the cynical smirk off and scream!
One life to infect your neighborhood. One chance only: today.

1- John Prine, 1969.

Copyright, Doug Stuber, 2001. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Sewol, by Joan Barasovska

The Sewol

There are 206 bones in the adult human skeleton, also in the teenage human skeleton.
Thousands of them rest thousands of feet below the ocean’s surface where chunks of a ferry float, where cranes prospect when the sea is calm.
The children’s lost bones must be buried in dry ground; their parents are frantic to bury what is already buried.
Photos in the paper of mothers and fathers, heads bent, hands covering their faces, and we hear the short cell phone calls from the children: I love you, goodbye.
In the paper, the suicide note of the principal, who survived, offering his ashes to the sea:
“Perhaps I should be a teacher for those children in the other world.”
The orders were to stay, to keep to your room, to your bed, to obey.
They obeyed.
The grownups fled in lifeboats, the children stayed and stayed.
Their ghost teacher may reach them in a year or a century.
They can only wait.

 

Copyright, Joan Barasovska, 2014.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Follow Your dreams (with update)

My family lived in the Haudenosaunee “Chosen Place” in the summer. It is called Canandaigua. In that place many tales from the past continued. The tale of the Great White Snake, the Tales of Handsome Lake, the spiritual leader who preached a way for Natives and Europeans to get along, and some of the rules that were sacred to the Native Americans the French labeled Iroquois.

One rule was that all major decisions were “tossed across the fire” until everyone agreed that the right decision was made. It meant that a 12-year-old, lacrosse-playing novice could be the lone hold out about a major decision, and until his mind was swayed, the decision was on hold. This type of consensus may be impossible in today’s “democracy” but what’s going on in democracy in the USA is a long way from the Federalist Papers idea of democracy.

The US System of government, was, in fact modeled after the Iroquois version, in which tribes, clans and individuals could petition the decisions.

It’s been a long time since citizen Ralph Nader or anyone else, like Mr. Brady (see failed anti-gun legislation) was taken seriously by government, if their proposals meant even the slightest less profit, and even the slightest more sharing of wealth, or preserving the environment, or bringing back mass transportation in the 70 cities in which GM, Firestone and Standard Oil conspired to buy up the local trains and replace them with busses during the depression of the 1930s when they could also find cheap labor to tear up the tracks(eventually of course, cars became the nearly exclusive transportation vehicles).

Nader’s Environmental Protection Agency has become a politicized laboratory doing testing on animals. Ooops.

1) FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS : there was only one crime I know of that was punished by banishment from a tribe (a de facto death penalty) back in the day. And that was against those who failed to follow their dreams. Compare this to today’s corporate culture in which following your dreams (except in the most enlightened places) is pretty much disallowed. Why was this so important? Because those who do NOT follow their dreams become a drain on society. They are bitter, angry and maybe even become insane when their dreams are denied. And why would one deny their dreams in a culture that hardly had money at all? Who knows, maybe for love. Maybe they fell in love with someone who INSISTS that they follow not their own dream, but their lover’s dream. Well both could get kicked out then I guess.

We live in a time when from the first day of elementary school, students are taught to pass a test. A test developed by corporations who need people to think the way they do. And that means, be greedy, work for the profit on ONLY their company, do little to help others outside the company, etc. Which university you get into depends on how well you follow the edicts of THE CORPORATIONS’ tests, and then which university you graduate from has a lot to do with where you will work. and in the USA not even 30% of the people have a bachelor’s degree. And their job prospects have dimmed considerably since so many skilled and non skilled labor jobs have been shipped to low-paying countries, like China.

https://www.youtube.com/user/WhoPaysFilm

2) Making love is the highest homage to God. This is because to make a baby completes the Creators dream of seeing how well human beings will do with the earth he has given us. Oh? Then at least we are not doing very well. Unlike the Christians, who profited immensely by killing Islamists in the Crusades, and then quite a bit more so by creating genocide in North and South America (3000 cultures were wiped out, and many of the languages are gone now too) who felt that love making was not a holy experience (unless I guess you want to count the Catholic Priests who must believe homosexual rape of choir boys is holy, but since no baby-making is likely, then NO THIS IS NOT HOLY).

3) Make everyone in the tribe feel that their contribution is the MOST important thing for the tribe. The chief used to visit the lacrosse-stick makers every day. These were people who, though maybe not as smart, were gifted with their hands. Maybe not warrior material, but so so so important to the tribe. Without those sticks, how could men train for war? Without being ready for war, who knows when the next Mohawk attack could come. (Of Course the Peacemaker, a Huron, once came into Haudenosaunee lands and convince the five tribes, Mohawk, Oneida, Cayuga, Onandaga and Seneca, to create a peace, which they did, and it lasted 3500 years apparently).

So, when everyone feels like their contribution is equal and very important, they are happy.

4) Grow beans, corn and squash.

5) Never hide anything from children. Let them play and find out about nature on their own. They will learn what they need to learn by asking elders and by observing. Do not force one way of thinking on anyone.

6) Always learn from those who live life a different way. This is how the Natives were predisposed to helping the White Folks who showed up and would have certainly perished in the early winters.– hence Thanksgiving. Some thanks the tribes got later on.

Delight in the idiosyncrasies of others. Instead of being judgmental (we’ll leave that to the Creator) learn form the different ways people live their lives. Their is no reason to belittle someone just because they go through life a different way. In fact, delighting in, finding humor in, and learning from other people’s ways only increases your ability to follow your dreams. Having met an unusual person, you may realize that parts of their ways would improve your own way of doing things.

So, when you have a friend or meet someone who goes through life acting like a fool, take the time to find out WHY they are acting like a fool. You may soon realize they have a good reason for acting like a fool, and it may cause you to be more foolish yourself. Well, nothing like a fool to brighten up a meeting.

7) Always gives thanks to the creator when eating another animal or even dandelion leaves. THANKSGIVING for what we have. Without this, some will take advantage of this earth for their own profit.

8) People over profit.

9) Everything is its own God. The Creator gave each living thing, from a blade of grass to a human being, innate abilities to thrive, not thrive, or perish. If one Oak tree grows higher than another, it is a sign that the tree wanted to get more out of life, thus no two things are the same. This principle is vital to understanding Haudenosaunee culture, and that of many Native American tribes. If each thing has been given certain powers, some limited, others vast, then it is up to the individual to make the most of what the Creator gave them, and this leads to more principles.

10) Do not rely on others to solve your problems. Doing so is an afront to the Creator, and creates problems for the tribe. In certain situations of course, there must be a team effort to make the best of a bad problem.

11) There is no Hell.  Since the Creator created everything, everything goes back to meet the Creator when they die.  Some with heads held up, other in shame.  This concept opens the way for genuine rehabilitation of those acting in bad ways.  Even those who have committed the worst crimes, like murder, will end up slaves to the wronged family, and may, through their own hard work, be freed any time the family deems he or she is ready to have their own place in society.  In moderns terms, this boils down to “no jail.” Yes it puts a burden on tribe members to deal with the problems a person has created, but those same tribe members should have been supporting each human so that they would not turn to crime.  Thus, if the clans or tribes are small enough, supportive enough, following other rules of inclusion, crimes are rare.  Anyone thinking about a crime could always “through it over the fire’ and be told exactly why the abhorrent idea should not be carried out.

 

Copyright, Doug Stuber, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Follow Your Dreams

Added a key philosophy #9.

Dougstuber's Blog

My family lived in the Haudenosaunee “Chosen Place” in the summer. It is called Canandaigua. In that place many tales from the past continued. The tale of the Great White Snake, the Tales of Handsome Lake, the spiritual leader who preached a way for Natives and Europeans to get along, and some of the rules that were sacred to the Native Americans the French labeled Iroquois.

One rule was that all major decisions were “tossed across the fire” until everyone agreed that the right decision was made. It meant that a 12-year-old, lacrosse-playing novice could be the lone hold out about a major decision, and until his mind was swayed, the decision was on hold. This type of consensus may be impossible in today’s “democracy” but what’s going on in democracy in the USA is a long way from the Federalist Papers idea of democracy.

The US System of government…

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