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Desert Forms ~ Hughie Lee-Smith, 1957

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Spooky summer on the horizon I’m gazing at
from my window into the streets
That’s where it’s going to be where everyone is
walking around, looking around out in the open
suspecting each other’s heart to open fire
all over the streets
like streets you read about every day
who are the network we travel through on the way to the center
which is energy filling life
and bursting with joy all over the screen
I can’t sit still any longer!

I want to go where I’m not feeling so bad
Get off this little island before the bridges break
(my heart is a sore thing too)
No I want to sit in the middle watching movies
then go to bed in my head
Someone is banging on it with a heavy stick like the enemy
who is he going to be turns into a face you can’t recognize
then vanishes behind a window behind a gun
Like the lonely hero stalking the main street
cries out Where are you? I just want to know
all the angles of death possible under the American sky!

I can hardly see for all the buildings polluting the sky
until it changes into a barrage of bottles
then clears up for a second while you breathe
and you realize you’e still as alive as ever and want to be
but would like to be somewhere else perhaps Africa
Start all over again as the race gets darker and darker
and the world goes on the way I always thought it would
For the winner is someone we recognize out of our collective past
which is turning over again in the grave

It is so important when one dies you replace her
and never waste a minute

Revolution ~ Anne Waldman

To know ourselves, we must know the Neanderthals
Handprints on a cave wall, crumbs from a meal: the new science of Neanderthals radically recasts the meaning of humanity

Who were the Neanderthals? Even for archaeologists working at the trowel’s edge of contemporary science, it can be hard to see Neanderthals as anything more than intriguing abstractions, mixed up with the likes of mammoths, woolly rhinos and sabre-toothed cats. But they were certainly here: squinting against sunrises, sucking lungfuls of air, leaving footprints behind in the mud, sand and snow. Crouching to dig in a cave or rock-shelter, I’ve often wondered what it would be like to watch history rewind, and see the empty spaces leap with shifting, living shadows: to collapse time, reach out, and allow my skin to graze the warmth of a Neanderthal body, squatting right there beside me. https://aeon.co/essays/to-know-ourselves-we-must-first-know-the-neandert...

~~~

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smiley7's picture

Today's featured artist: Kate Tempest, British actor and singer. Lyrics of the first song:

Lessons

I see the truth
Even here, in the lies of the city
It comes for me with its hands out
When I can handle it the least
When the madness has consumed me
And I’ve mistaken it for my nature
And I have given myself over to the things that leave me weak
Each day I wake with the fury to change things
But with each hour that passes, that fury subsides
I’ve cramped myself in to such tight little boxes
I hope that I live, but I’m not sure this is life

I've seen the lions turn to cubs
And I've seen the hunters turn to prey
The lessons will come again tomorrow
If they're not learned today
I have seen the lions turn to cubs
And I have seen the hunters turn to prey
The lessons will come again tomorrow
If they're not learned today

All things are singing, life is a chorus
It all gets so deafening sometimes
Exhausted, my ears have grown numb
To the song in all things
But sunlight on water
Kissing at the bus stop in the rain
Or the wind through my fingers when I raise my palms in the dark
It sings to the parts that are still wild, still untamed
I thought I’d learned my lesson once
I learned it till it thumped my head to numbness
Yearning it would let me rest
And then I learned it more, I learned it again
And then, just when I thought I had it done
I found myself mid-mistake, realizing I’d not yet begun

I have seen the lions turn to cubs
I have seen the hunters turn to prey
Our lessons will come again tomorrow
If they’re not learned today
I've seen the lions turn to cubs
And I have seen the hunters turn to prey
The lessons will come again tomorrow
Cause they weren’t learnt today

You would think that over time
Our lessons would be learned
But time and time again, we find
Our lessons have returned
And even though we've sworn repent
And promised no repeat
We find ourselves back here again
With the same old ragged drum to beat
Saying, how many times must we be shown
The outcome of the pattern?
How many times must we be shown
The outcome of the pattern?

~~~

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Raggedy Ann's picture

Be the Water
How adaptable are you?
Do you resist change?
Be the water and flow
around the obstacles
of life.

How flexible are you?
Can you bend and sway?
Be the water and flow
over the waterfall.

Adaptability and flexibility
will make life easier
as you bend and sway,
embrace the change,
flow around obstacles,
dive over the waterfall
and be the water.

Enjoy a flexible and adaptable life, everyone! Pleasantry

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"When will our conscience's grow so tender that we will act to prevent human misery rather than avenge it?" Eleanor Roosevelt

"The secret of change is to focus all your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new." Socrates (469-399 BC)

smiley7's picture

@Raggedy Ann

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smiley7's picture

Hope you are well; love the poem, clever methaphor of water finding its way. Cool beans.

Sitting here on a telephone hold; no ones home apparently or they have too many visitors. Anyways, a decent day here, threatening rain.

Thanks for the poem and being here.

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magiamma's picture

Getting hotter here. So many grasses are blooming now. We have had a late rain and things are riotous in ther beauty and harmony. Gardening my heart out. Crazy. Amazing.

Saved this article for you. Thought you as a journalist would appreciate.

In a Class War—Like It or Not—the System Always Makes a Killing

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/05/21/class-war-it-or-not-system...

Journalists aren’t supposed to “bury the lead.” But when death is the topic and corporate power is the culprit, the connection routinely goes unmentioned.

Class war—waged methodically from the top down—is so constant and pervasive that it might seem unremarkable. The 24/7 siege to make large companies more profitable and the wealthy more wealthy is going on all around us. In the process, it normalizes avoidable death as a cost of doing business.

Overall, news media are part of that normalization. While negative coverage of Donald Trump has been common due to his handling of the pandemic, media outrage has been muted in relation to the magnitude of the dying in our midst—at a time when most of the dying could have been prevented.

Deaths tend to become less “newsworthy” as the numbers mount and shock gives way to tacit media acceptance.

Someone needed to say that. Life is precious.

Thanks for the wonderful art and music. Take good care and have a good one.

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Stop Climate Change Silence - Start the Conversation

Hot Air Website, Twitter, Facebook

smiley7's picture

@magiamma

Thanks for the article; unfortunately, i've lived to see, beginning with Reagan, the wasting away of all the theatre and dance companies we built and were thriving and in the last twenty years the demise of journalism. Without the forth estate, a republic will not stand.

Happy the garden's doing well.

Be safe.

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Lookout's picture

Beautiful day here after rain the last couple of days. I've almost got my tractor repaired. Got the new gas tank on but I ordered the wrong fan blade. Hope it arrives soon. I need to grade the road and mow. Still having a nice wildflower bloom. Garden is going well. Been enjoying cooking (and eating).

Normally I'm at the Florida Folk Festival this weekend. Miss seeing all my buddies and the music too. Nice to avoid the drive, packing and unpacking though.

Hope everyone is doing well. I'm feeling more hopeful of late. If COVID numbers continue to fall after this reopening I think we'll be good shape. It still hasn't reached these backwaters. Take care!

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

smiley7's picture

@Lookout

Understand your missing the music and camaraderie. Tied of all this rain.

Good fortune with the tractor and be safe out there.

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enhydra lutris's picture

around on the calendar again, ready or not. After nearly a week of rain we're having a period of moderate temps with real heat on the horizon. That generated a spurt of yard work and other business and strenuous activities that knocked me down yestidday. but all is well so far this morning and the Saturday routine is already ready to roll on downhill. An easier day is in the planning stages and hence in the offing, but not unduly idle all the same.

I loved the opening graphic and suspect I'm still suffering from our missed desert trip, jonesing for the vistas, unique biomes and higher temps. ( Also beet chips, assorted date confections and my favorite rolled-taco joint) The desert has its unique sonic background too, which I also envision in that picture and also miss.

To find, see, and know the Neanderthals we need only look inside and remember deep distant memories. They're there. Just go squat in an empty rock shelter in a not-too-urban locale and eat a midday sandwich and perhaps an apple, or just bread and cheese. A forested cliff side overlook will do as well.

be well and have a good one.

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

smiley7's picture

@enhydra lutris

Have a growing affinity for the Neanderthals, my ancestors for sure. Good we learn more about them.

Enjoy you holidays and be safe,

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we have 3 basic ways of dealing with this IMO

1. resistance
2. consideration
3. acceptance

It is not my fault things are screwed up to this degree.
Our choice to accept, negotiate or reject our situation.
Best choice is to imagine a more positive path forward.

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smiley7's picture

@QMS

Well said,

To the positive.

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we don't ever seem to learn them do we. The answers seem so common-sense but we're stuck in a system that's killing us and the rest of the life on the planet. I would add a #4 to QMS's list; try our best to do better to take care of the earth and each other. I like to think with a massive shift in that direction by a massive number of people things might change. Wishful thinking.
On another note, I'm embarking on a road trip to NY soon and would like to gather information from those of you who know about traveling conditions etc. along my chosen route (as soon as we figure out which route we will take) Smile

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smiley7's picture

@randtntx

Be delighted to share information, having made the same trip multiple times before.

Those lessons marching through history, ignored. Anyways, i enjoy the artist's work and happy you are here to read and listen.

Happy holiday weekend.

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@smiley7 wishing you a good holiday weekend as well.

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