stars of everything

stars of everything mandala s

In my childhood, even our suburban house was only half a block from woods and meadows and creeks to explore.  We had no devices to keep us indoors, and we went outside at every chance.  There were still open spaces, for butterflies dragonflies tadpoles bees creeks meadows woods trees rocks sky prickers blackberries colors and clouds and wind—we ran wild, my mother just told us to be home for dinner, who does that now? They would take your children away from you.

I had the companionship of trees plants wild things animals and such clouds to contemplate–I used to lie on my back in the grass and just look at the sky, what was I thinking? Maybe thoughts beyond thought before thought.  Now my mind is so busy it never stops to just be and let the world run through like a river like the wind.

watching my
child-self lying in
a bed of
greentree bird
sky
everything is opened
up, shining—the world

explodes in
to a forever,
endless waves
merging as
they ebb and flow—cascading
landscapes shouting yes!

stars of everything mandala close up s

Sarah at earthweal asked us to think how we connected with nature in childhood.  I took sentences and lines from 5 previous posts–especially I remembered writing about this subject in a collaboration I did with Claudia McGill, and the bulk of the text is from there.

The art was done as a homage to artist Thornton Dial–I took his title, Stars of Everything, and made my own collage and accompanying words.  He knew about the power of art.

“Art is like a bright star up ahead in the darkness of the world. It can lead peoples through the darkness and help them from being afraid of the darkness….Art is a guide for every person who is looking for something.”
–Thornton Dial

 

on a turtle’s back

turtle back round s

we cling to ourselves
(a)mending all our invitations
with threads that must be pulled
in just the right way

we disguise our own
houses as fortresses–
foundations sunk deep
into the growth of the economy

we arrange nature
to reflect order, not chaos,
not seeds strewn on the wind–
we kill the intruders,
the unwanted, unexpected,
the exceptional,
with chemicals and pruning

we have forgotten
awe, the strangeness
of wonder, of what
we did not know
to look for

we’ve forgotten to be
curious, to open
the door, to enter
into dialogue with
forces we cannot control

we no longer know how
to return what is given
with care and kindness–
to celebrate the earth,
to leave room for her
to sing her own song

turtle back half a

Merril’s photo of the turtle she moved off the road on one of her walks provided the inspiration for both my art and my poem.  Turtles are symbols for Mother Earth in many cultures, and are said to carry the world on their backs.

They could use some help right now with the load we have given them.  For the earthweal challenge culture and nature.

turtle back close up s

Nina and I both love turtles and have posted about them on memadtwo many times.  You can see some of the posts here.

turtle shell s