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Retiring Nomad River

I finally finished retiring four years ago,
a process that started in my mid-fifties
due to late adopting kids with special needs,
including needs for me to be home
to personally walk them on,
harness them in,
and wheel them back off, their diverse buses
and robotic ramped vans.

During those final weeks of quasi-gainful employment
I amped up my search for a new home
preferably in New London, CT,
because I had visited, and liked, All Souls UU;

But, possibly in Norwich,
where I have some family,
not necessarily white like me,
or someplace more rural
in-between.

Long story short,
which is not like tangential me,
I ended up
or started out,
depending on where this story starts for you
and me
on the south end of Norwich,
just north of the old State Hospital,
seeking healthy justice
above a steep and brooding bank
down to the troubled Thames River.

From here
it is difficult not to notice
how traffic flows
between Norwich and New London.

But, in the case of All Souls UU
and UU Norwich,
not so much,
maybe not enough.

When I lived in the Hartford area
I joyfully attended the Unitarian Society of Hartford,
a fairly large multicultural tent
filled with reviving gospel music.

So, when looking for a retirement destination,
I traveled on-line to uua.org
to see what might be available
in addition to All Souls New London
and found a small cell,
apparently renters quasi-homeless,
Norwich UU,
or UU Norwich,
or maybe both
I hope.

I pictured no choir,
no active faith formation options
for people of all ages
and figured,
probably not right for me.

Long story maybe a little bit short,
it took me over four years
to make my first Norwich UU visit,
recently.

I found somewhat fewer of us
than the number of Norwich residents
on the All Souls Members and ActiveAllies list.

My background is in cooperative economic
and affordable housing development.

With an MDiv from a Catholic seminary
and a double-Master’s in Public Administration
and Community Development
from Southern Illinois,
Carbondale,
where Bucky Fuller once taught
Synergetics,

It feels awkward
to invest in All Souls together
where all souls are welcome,
by commuting back and forth alone in my blue steel truck,
while there is clearly plenty of room
and welcome
available right in my new home town,
where I now know no one except family,
over four years later.

This is a schizophrenic discomfort
for climate activist
and cooperative local community investor
me.

Back in my early adoption years,
I worked in the Office of Urban Affairs,
New Haven,
for the Archdiocese of Hartford,
where I listened to a great deal of turmoil
about aging and poor urban parishes
thinking about how to join forces
to survive
while sharing a clergy ministry team.

So, I wonder
How would it feel to UU Norwich survivors,
activists,
communicants,
healthy and smart registrants to vote local
while thinking global,
to carpool to All Souls on Sunday mornings,
to sit together
in chairs hooked to-gather,
perhaps joined by us other emigrant immigrant
Norwich residents already All Souls affiliated,

To also share a discussion circle
after the chalice light is extinguished
to check in with each other over coffee,
maybe herbal tea,
to reflect on what we heard
and sang
and sometimes endured, today,

To ponder aloud how this speaks
and does not speak
why
and how
and when we arrive together
back in Norwich,
having solved
and resolved to absolve
most of the Thames River watershed issues
rolling back and forth
and swelling in-between
this tidal river’s ups and downs.

Perhaps some of us
or even all of us
would also like to form a Sanctuary Circle
meeting during the week.

Maybe have lunch together,
share our Norwich organizing
and multicultural explorations together,
contribute to All Souls Green Sanctuary
and GRACE anti-racism projects,
restore justice to replace retributive injustice,
speak power with truth,
live together, not apart,
more resiliently.

Perhaps it is possible
to grow more robust
as a distinguished part
of All Souls,
combine resources,
economize cooperatively,
ecologize more holistically
and theologize more healthily
without losing Norwich UU tradition,
focus
mission,
effective
resonance,
green and black and brown and rainbow
resilience.

As for me,
I’m still looking at New London
real estate listings
while troubled about abandoning
a nomad’s home
in which I never let myself fully invest

While dreaming of emigrating further south
downriver toward climatically rising water levels
while still in my first five carbon-burning years
of retiring immigration.

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Stories Are Not Songs

But songs are a musical story.

I know a difference
between telling a story
and voicing these same lyrics
of anxiety and ease,
of bearing and healing injustices,
medicine for well-earned peace.

I feel a difference
between progressive story telling,
between historically accurate autobiography,
and singing cultural passion narratives,
felt experiences,
perennial sensory moments
of nutrition and starvation,
light and dark,
health and pathology,
resilience and fragility,
privilege and responsibility,
resonance and ongoing anxiety,
harmony and yet mystery,
acceptance and hidden avoidance,
integrity, yet irritating dissonant echoes
either empowering verbs
or neither un-nouned knowns
win/lose explicating with shy win/win implications

Why grateful Yes!
suggests, more hesitantly Not Not Yet?

Being, yet still becoming
Left with indigenously
endemically
regeneratively curious Right
earned ease.

I know a difference
does not mean I can make sense of it.

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Safe Space

Am I safe now?
Are we safe?

Is it safe to listen here?
To speak of over there?

Is Earth safe to sing?
Safe to dance with?
Safe for new birth?
To spin past romance?

Does life matter
if no one’s noticing?
Remembering?
If no one’s vocation
is to sacredly listen?
while all creation refills silent gaps.

Are we safe now?
Reborn silent angels,
angels of light,
pushing back this dark night.

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Wanted: Better Health Care Systems

I’ve heard it said,
and seen it done,

“This currency of capitalism
is the very venomous root of all evil.”

And, I’ve heard good cooperative capitalists say,
perhaps a bit too loudly,

“Not money, this root,
merely innocent paper and metal-based resource,
but human natural win/lose evolutionary greed,”

Selfish inhumane spirits indeed
are Earth’s rapacious demon seed.

This reminds me,
I’ve also heard it said,
and felt depressing loss,
that “Automated guns
are the root toxic cause of massive murder.”

I’ve also heard deer and quail unautomated hunters,
perhaps a tit for tat too defensively military unmindful,

“Not guns at moral fault,”
although not quite so innocent
ballistic metal-based,
or even plastic-paste resource
not the least bit recyclable,
“but human unnatural win/lose mental devolutionary madness.”
Shadowy spirits indeed,
such dark seed.

Seldom have I heard it said,
or felt lose/lose despairingly unresolved debate,
the better identified malignant root
of win/lose violent communications
and malignant divestments of anthropocentric inhumane nature,
is the unfortunate sociopathic RELATIONSHIP
between automated guns
and Might Makes Right
win/lose devolutionary natures,
darkly co-relational,
co-arising bipolar pathology issues
indeed
rotten detaching attachment seeds

Perhaps it would be helpful
if I could hear
what I have most often seen
transparently and vulnerably lose/lose
economic-political capital extracting
colonizing
enslaving
racist
sexist failure to notice
co-arising internal/external tool and currency invested relationships,

These most persistently unhealthy dual roots
of anti-ecological,
competitive,
win/lose economic failure
also the unfortunate politically sociopathic relationship
between capitalism’s commodifying monopoly
on FirstWorld accepted as entitled true value,
reasonable
culturally tolerated
historic might makes right
competitive left-brain dominant greed,
envy
detachment
fragmentation of left/right harmonic co-relational identity,
cognitive/affective dissonance chronic,
becoming acute,
critical ego/Earth climate dysfunctional lack of relationship risks
of long-term industrial revolutionary opportunities

Where MotherEarth
transparently and vulnerably,
courageously and curiously,
rightfully and co-responsibly nurtures
Either/Or polypaths
and Both/And polyphonic polynomials
producing/consuming polyculturally health-rooted outcomes,
nutritional win/win yields
more health/wealth cooperative
in bilaterally conscious minds,
humane hearts,
secular/sacred ungreedy
co-passioning souls.

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Designing Healthier Democracy

Green democratic design,
like PermaCulture Design,
intends polyculturally resilient nutritional outcomes
for global, as for local, interdependently co-attracted ecosystems
composed, in designing part,
of social-ego communication networks.

Nutritionally attractive outcomes,
and not so much toxically extractive capital incomes,
are naturally and spiritually favored by democratic energy co-investors,

Including,
more recently,
AgriCulture’s capital investments in extracting nutrients without replacing,
harvesting forests without planting,
maintaining,
mutually nourishing multicultural saplings,
now sadly recognized as monocultural
unattractive Business As Usual
leading to toxic fading
fragmenting
global and local sustainable extended energy-family incomes
shrinking future Earth resilience
to feed corporate short-term strangling wealth,
capital-infested.

PermaCulture Design,
like democratic energy of attraction redesigns
for resolving kleptocratic energy of extraction undesign,
like nondualistic indigenous wisdom of a win/win GoldenRule child,
may distinguish,
but would never divide,
as capitalism does,
organic forest health
from permacultural everybody wealth.

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Experiments in Communication

Life is an experiment
for growing compassionate communication,
as any sex therapist
will tell you;
not too fast
yet not too slow.

Ego/Eco-Investing
is a bilaterally beneficial health experience
designed to sustain resilient communion,
as any child
retaining co-empathic emotional intelligence
may hear
and taste
and see
and smell you.

Integrity is a natural hugging exercise
damaged by leftbrain dominant fragmentation,
as any academic verbal behavioral therapist
or economist
or partisan politician
will cripplingly show and tell you.

Rabidly over-populating win/lose predators
sniff for money,
other useful assets,
capital-infested fed-heads,
any potential nutrients,
Then bleed you dry,
pee, and or poop, on you,
Then move on.

Compassion’s economic profile looks rather different,
more of a healthy cooperative wealth experience
designed to feed,
not ignore,
emotional intelligence,
To sustain resilient ecofeminist communion,
to gather win/win expectant communicators;

Precisely the opposite of dispassion,
an unhealthy dominatrix leftbrain
too western monocultural prominent
loss of rightbrain interdependent emotional intelligence
empowered
outflowing
inflowing power, creolic resonance,
outflowing healthy wealth of resilience.

Love is an empowering experience
of and for polypathic global communication
as any ecotherapist
may respectfully hug you,
and a tree,
equally.

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Unfinished Exodus

As Exodus tells his story,
Moses was compelled by God
and then invited,
commissioned by inside/outside Voice,
and bv voices of Israel’s extended people
to lead them through forty desert years
of sometimes nomadic wins
and mostly immigrating losses
in a competitively shared wilderness.

Then,
just as they approached the Promised Land’s border,
now matured
multigenerationally seasoned
regeneratively prepared for entry
into this great Middle Eastern creolization journey
in-between Earth’s secular/sacred history
of multicultural peace-making,
win/win environmental envisioning
and compassionate planning
and cooperative implementation,

Just as Moses could climb a sacred yang mountain
and look across rich heavenly green Promise
in Yahweh’s chosen yin valley
of profoundly interdependent
complexly transcendent
co-presence,

Moses suddenly understood right then
right there,
he would die before he could live
among those who would cross over
to complete this epic historic pilgrimage
toward compassionate climate of Promise,
both secular and sacred majesty,
patriotic epiphany
of resilient
multiculturing
healthy demo/theo-cracy.

I see our post-millennial Boomer regenerative process
restoratively wandering through this win/lose forty year
post-industrial wilderness
toward epic climate pollution risks
and monocultural loss
for polycultural wins
of ego-left/eco-right opportunity.

Here,
with now,
on this very cusp of 2020 robust revision,
I know we will not live
to see health optimizing
resilient Promised land and waters,

Although I have lived and loved to locally
and globally,
personally
and politically,
ecologically
and economically long to grow
together
migrant green integrity.

And my autonomous left hemisphere feels disappointed
sad
unfairly deprived about this unfinished migration,
Frustrated because cooperative liberal love,
active compassion,
is so obviously healthier for all travelers riding Earth,
wealthier than competitive fragmenting mistrust,
conserving climatic rage
about our globally
and locally unfinished industrial business.

At the same time
my dipolar interdependent right hemisphere
remains timelessly silent
on topics of ego-left mortality.

S/he may not distinguish
between first yang-patriarchal inhale
and last yin-matriarchal exhale
because this Zen ZeroSoul,
this Holy Nature/Spirit
is one
with that of Moses,

With all Messianic pilgrims,
leaders,
facilitators,
mediators,
With all bodhisattva peace mentors,
With restorative peace and justice integrity Advocates,
wandering a post-industrial green wilderness.

Polypathic Moses
of Earth’s great exodus Rapture
into unfinished healthier life
wealthier transformational business
of regenerating Promise,
for transgenerating lands and waters,
mountains and river-valleys,
mortally unfinished transcendent Eminence
and immortally interdependent Imminence,
Yang universal being with Yintegral uniting
resilient becoming
yet unfinished Exodus
into climatic healthy Promise.

 

 

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