Saturday, October 28, 2017

Earth and Music

Image result for small earth

You need me. Earth moans through wind gusts, floods and fires. I'm tired and ill and I don't want to, but I will blow you down. I will drown you in your timber houses, in your glass sky scrapers, in your metal mobile homes. You can hide in your cement cellar bunkers, but eventually you will need me. You will need my soil and water and sunshine and air. You will need my spirit too. 

The earth wears weapons everywhere. She has a whole arsenal. Not of police gun powder, the daggers of terrorists or the pontificated, exaggerated lies of presidents, but of a quiet gentle roar. Love. Fill your packs, pockets and hearts with it for love fights too. It fights with newborn baby cries, fights with anthologies, with anthropologists and apologies, with scientists, stories, theater, music, parades, protests, amateur poetry, tears and time. It fights with the wandering wind, reunions, rainbows, coffee, wine and sunshine. It fights with forgiveness and trust, empathy, connection, collaboration and philosophical conversation. It's why there are sailboats and ski slopes and air balloons, why there are round tables, picture books, paint, bicycles and violins. For we need love in all its manifestations. Without it, we will surely see the end of the human race: the deaths of seven billion broken hearts. So be beautiful and brave. Love and be loved. 

I was ingesting the news like medicine. I must take it, I thought, to deserve this life as a light skinned American citizen. I do nothing else to help. I read and love and write. I write words for myself, and write words to be tossed and lost to the clamorous, crowded internet. I would soak my soul in the stuff, pausing occasionally to send out prayers to the sky, or God, or the ceiling, or myself. But then it became too much. Too many tragedies, too many infuriating, overwhelming, confusing tragedies. 

I'm a full time working mom now. It is sweet and stressful and fulfilling, and busy, so very busy. Most nights, there is dancing before bathing and teeth brushing and books in bed. We call them dance parties. Soon as the speaker starts blowing out beats, I let my body react to the music, flow to the rhythms and rattle, twist, and shake. If my body is holding, hoarding, or molding any worry into my internal cracks and waterways, I address each limb and muscle and say, let it go...for this drum beat, whip it gone, shake it out, jump it up, and move it out and move on. I need sleep to live, but sleep and stress are like a child who is loved and a child who is neglected and lonely. I will not be granted awards for grinding my teeth while I sleep. I tell myself. I will not be given grants and trophies for developing heart disease and diabetes, so MOVE baby, move. Let in the music and move. No news at night, not anymore. Music and paper books, pajamas and lullabies. There is talk too and the splash and flow of sink water, sponges and soap, and the quiet clatter of porcelain dishes and glass and metal. There is laughter and story telling and most nights, we keep our cell phones away, ignored and left to purse pockets or high up on kitchen counters. Most nights, we are able to leave the world outside our windows.

I haven't been reading or receiving the Sunday newspaper. I paused delivery in early September. I didn't have the time to even sit and pull it from it's plastic sleeve, but I don't know if I want it anymore anyway. This past year has felt like a tremendously long rising action of anticipation for a climax that becomes more wet with blood and salt water with each passing day. So now I find myself hiding from the news, camping out in a small tent of daily details. But I need to remember that when I gave birth two years ago, I didn't look. I let my midwife and the doctor watch my body as it expanded and brought forth my baby, while I pushed and inhaled and exhaled and pushed and inhaled and exhaled, but maybe if I had sat up and seen my body, seen it as it took perfect (and yes, painful) care of me, I would have been less frightened. Instead I saw the worry in my midwife's eyes, and the dark insides of my own eyelids and the hurried arrival of a c-section team. 

I'm looking for some of it again, finding people standing together for truth, dignity, kindness and love. To watch and appreciate the world as she swallows our smog and blows her storms into our cities and be grateful and kind to her. I see you. I see you holding us between your trees and seas and grasses. I see you growing clouds and letting down your rain. I see you melting and sweating and breaking. I see you and I love you.