Friday, 23 of February of 2018

Laura Woodswalker – Cry From The Belly Of The Beast

They say that it’s “deadening”
living in the belly of the Beast
But I’m not dead yet. My life is a battle
an every day battle for my soul.
A fight to keep from being mangled by the time clock
a struggle to keep from being run over
by rush hour traffic
a struggle to hear the Mother beneath the concrete.

How I envy the noble tree-sitting warriors
who know that they are heroes carrying on the fight
wrapped in the strength of the forest and the Mother’s closeness.
But pity us pathetic denizens of the Monster.
The sheep compelled to march on the treadmill
and breathe the auto stench
along with the knowledge that We Are Part Of The Problem.
How much harder here, to cling to the scraps of defiance
to draw up the quiet strength
while imprisoned in enemy lands.

All we have for solace is the ragged remnants:
State Parks for Sunday picnics
the empty lot… the last field of weeds…
the forgotten trail… the abandoned railroad woods…
the deer and raccoons that hide in the thickets
the willow fringe along the garbage-choked stream–
the stream that still remembers
the living channel beneath the concrete.

And make no mistake! I love these remnants of the Wild,
the broken brave holdouts,
every bit as much as you love the noble oldgrowth
that’s never seen the blade.
And if I could muster an army of warriors
on behalf of these desperate guerrilla creatures
and these weeds, still lush with exuberant hope,
struggling to reclaim the waste,
I would fight just as hard for them.

Because I love my Mother Earth
not only in her majesty and bounty,
but also when She lies broken in chains,
struggling and gasping for life.

Laura Woodswalker
September-October 2000 Earth First!

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