Litany

The thing is…

it depends on how you define environmentalists.

 

If you define them as the recyclers and the “good-doers,”

the vegan eaters who see nature as something outside

of New York City’s walls, then I am with you, my friend—

I am tired of them.

 

Don’t get me wrong,

I nod my head to them—

but I bow my head, low,

to those teaching me

in this moment of climate catastrophe,

as my mom figures that, “Yeah,

my fall flowers may die

in this 90 degree late-September heat

but they look okay, now,”

that this is a fight for justice.

 

Look up the social pyramid

and you will see them:

another man with bottom line on the mind,

another woman standing up for him.

Another man calling out why feminism is

“A scam. We’re all equal here.”

 

It’s in the oil.

It’s in the system

that we were all born into.

It matters how we got here, oh yes.

It matters how we fight so that our children,

our children’s children and their children, stay around.

Can you really see them, Mr. and Mrs. Man, from way up there?

 

The system was rigged long ago,

and we have so much to carry already.

Shame is too heavy.

We need our hands to fight;

We need our voices to scream.

 

We need our eyes to see into the very near future,

into a world where the insects lay dead* and

and the birds in the morning don’t sing like they use to

and the fish in the ocean don’t swim like they used to

and the bread on the table don’t taste like it used to

because we cannot go back.

 

We can only hold those high up fuckers accountable,

rebuild,

and move on.

 

Industry heads, government leaders, blog readers: we are way past deciding whether climate change is something to be “believed.”

A highly recommended read: https://popula.com/2019/08/19/the-case-for-climate-rage/

*and a note: https://e360.yale.edu/features/insect_numbers_declining_why_it_matters

 

September 24, 2019

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Starfish

On Fridays,

I volunteer to bring food from companies around New York City—

consequently, close to wherever I am to begin with—

and bring it to nearby shelters.

It’s a lot easier than feeling like a shit

as a homeless man walks by on the subway

but what am I, are we, to do?

It’s somehow, in the mess of human history, a collective fault.

One of your great grandmothers or great uncles twice removed

allowed this to happen, god damn it (I wish it was that simple)!

He walks pigeon toed like my brother,

who was bought $3,000 orthotics and attended therapy for years.

He walked past 10, 50, 100 people who look more or less like me

and I don’t care if you’re a Puerto Rican-Italian mix with Brooklyn roots:

You have some money.

You took a shower this week.

You have some way in your pocket or in your chest

to communicate

and be heard…

We are all starfish.

How many do we save?

 

If you want to volunteer to help rescue food from companies and restaurants around New York City, check out https://www.rescuingleftovercuisine.org/. It’s a simple way to make a difference, and you can choose rescues that best fit your schedule. xo

 

March 15, 2019

What do you do

when you’re tired

like the world meant for you to be

and you’re broke

like the world meant for you to be

and you’re lonely

like the world meant for you to be?

 

You get angry

like Earth meant for you to be

you find truth

like Earth meant for to find

you fight back

like Earth meant for you to do

you let go of the world

like Earth meant for you to do, too.

 

You build a new world.

 

February 11, 2018

 

watching the moon

 

you are on your own

with a life that belongs

to no one–

and that is more than okay.

 

what do I believe in?

I believe in truth,

the elements,

digging underneath the dirt

of lies we have been hiding

underneath our skin,

feeding one another

 

with or without realizing it

your soul

is the soul of the Gods,

the air you take in

as you step outside,

the sky shading you from the universe above

the earth underneath your feet

tell me that you can live without this;

tell me that this isn’t life itself.

 

you are made out of flesh and bone,

truth and more truth

layered one on top of the other

if you forget your way,

remember that it probably wasn’t your way

to begin with.

 

the way is empty;

the way is full of life.

 

and that life is surrounding you,

always.

 

April 9, 2017

Practice

What makes you think you have to win,

that this is all a game?

 

I think that’s what they want you to think.

I think it’s what they’ve fed you since you were four.

 

Such a precious word, Practice.

 

Life is not winning and losing

and capitalism and greed

and first and last

and fixing and solving

and searching and striving.

 

Life is Practice–

for its own sake.

 

February 11, 2017

Inheritance

What legacy

have I been born into,

have you been born into,

have we been born into?

 

The farmer,

the preacher,

the banker,

the slave owner,

the slave;

the pawn,

the mom,

the sister,

the son,

the game.

 

It’s all a game of competition

or at least it all seems like a game of competition…

 

The Earth is not a game.

The Earth is life;

and we are part of the Earth.

 

We have each been handed an inheritance

that we had no control over.  You’re right.

 

We’ve all been infants, breast fed, bottle fed,

learned to read if we were lucky.

 

But how much did we really learn

if I am unable to read the society around me–

if society is unable to read itself?

 

Who created this inheritance, thought it was a good idea?

 

What is an inheritance anyway?

 

If leaves learned to read, write, speak

as we have…

perhaps we would have an answer.

 

January 22, 2017