The Lessons of the Crow

For the last year, The Crow has been telling me our planet is into its last stage of suffering. It’s only a moment before we pass the point of no return and the whole thing tosses us off of it. In many ways we’re already there.

I’ve seen it across the country in the form of waste. From landfill along the highways to deforestation and strip mining in our national parks. In East Texas, they hand you an over-cooked hamburger in a styrofoam container 5 times a normal size, with a plastic bag and a handful of bleached white napkins. On the Oregon and Californian coastlines there are the dead bodies of seals and sea birds decaying slowly, their guts full of plastics and no one notices. Back home in Philly, I’ve watched folks unload an entire car trunk’s worth of garbage bags in the abandoned lots of East Kensington only to have them open up days later scattering tons of plastic and paper product into the wind and across the sidewalks into the local ecosystem.

I’ve seen it everywhere and I’m no saint. I propel my poetry tours upon the ignited fumes of a fossil record that reaches back eons. And I, a storyteller, know nothing of its history. I, like everyone, have been taught to fill the tank without asking questions about where the fuel comes from. Right now each gallon comes cheap and I know it’s at the expense of some sacred waterway in North Dakota or a child’s life in the Middle East.

Yet, I keep going. We all keep contributing. This endless cycle has no end in sight.

That’s the reality.

The Fool in me sees the other side to this blunt truth. He sees that dreams can be manifested. He believes in The Artist and The Poet, and their abilities to create new realities. He sees The Crow, and says, “Well, there must be some reason The Crow is talking to me specifically, and not only that…He’s talking to other folks in my tribe as well. There must be some reason all of us in particular are even noticing.”

And then it clicks, and it’s pretty simple. It’s that we are the solutions that we seek, and all of this can be remedied if people like us continue to wake up to it.

I’m all about social activism. But the Earth is my number one bae. She doesn’t get enough attention in this current hierarchy of things that need to be fixed. I wish that were differrent. The warning signs are all there and it’s up to us whether or not to use them to empower ourselves and our home planet into a brighter future.

The industrial revolution is over, it’s time for a rêvolution of heart.

Anyway, Happy Earth Day, friends!

The Lessons of the Crow

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