Thriving

Number 24 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an article about what is happening in the Galapagos.

Sustainable
we say
when we want
to do something
but not enough

Keep it going
this life we lead
trailing detritus
in our wake

Nature is healing
they joke on Twitter
blue birds laughing
at blue birds flying
when the humans
locked themselves away

Could Nature thrive
with us here?
Or is it as the authors say
We are the disease.

What comforts would we
give up to live within
a thriving world?
What comforts would we
gain?

Hope

Number 23 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an article about voting in Travis County, Texas.

I want to hope
for a change in
the place where I’m from

Hope for something
that did you harm
is a fraught endeavor

How many times will
I let it break my heart?

But what if?
What if the best of it
becomes what it is
and not some aberration
outlier or exception
that proves the rule?

Can I hope for it
and for the first time
since I was knee high
to a grasshopper
feel like I am
welcomed there?

To hope to belong
to where you’re from
is a dangerous gamble.

But I hope.

Prison

Number 22 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an article in the LA Times about prison labor during the pandemic.

The way your heart stops
and your eyes tear up
you have to hide it
before they see
from behind
their bars

The letter that comes already
opened
in the mail
A piece of tape
to remind you
they are listening
they are reading
to everything you say
“I love you” no longer just
between family

Their requests, their needs
are huge even when they are
small
and impotence crawls up
your spine like a
shiver

They didn’t deserve this
to be locked away
hidden and fading
left to die
in sickness and in health

Oh, Honey

Number 21 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an article about a British guy calling idli boring.

Oh, honey

Perhaps it’s best to keep
your British mouth shut
about other peoples’ food

You conquered the world
for spice
but never let it touch
your cuisine

We try your dishes
(reaching for the salt)
And compliment you
on a job well done

Bless your heart,
you tried.

Rage

Number 20 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by the president’s COVID diagnosis, everything that fell out from that, and the announcement that he’s halting the process to reach an aid package until after the election. Instead of linking to these things, I invite you, if you haven’t, to read Audre Lorde’s The Uses of Anger: Women Responding to Racism.

When Mr. Nancy
explains that
“Anger gets shit done”
I wonder if rage
contains the same
power
or if it only cares
to burn it all to the fucking ground

A maskless plague rat
runs this country
spreads his vitriol and
disease
and snatches aid
from the sick and
suffering
on his own fucking whim

Anger cannot
hold what I feel

I am consumed in rage
and dream of
the inferno I could be
to clear the rot out

But

My soul longs to
imagine
create
build
a new world
lead by an ethic of
love and care

I wait for the rage to
run its course
and leave me my anger
to fuel my part in
a better world

NO

Number 19 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by the clusterfuck that was the debate.

I don’t want to write about the debate.
I am living on this conveyor belt of fear
Looking for a way off this ride.

I don’t want to write about the debate.
My rights are laid upon the butcher’s block
And the woman holding the cleaver
Will smile as she brings it down.

I don’t want to write about the debate,
Because my rage is boiling
I’ve burned down worlds with it before
But I don’t want to have to do it again

Symbols

Number 18 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an article about ownership and licensing of the Aboriginal flag.

Who could own the symbols of
our lives
our countries
our peoples
our cultures?

Disney, probably.

Stack them in the vault room
with The Mouse
Already copied, distributed, profited

What was yours was
supposed to become ours

Despite your wealth
Despite the unending parade of
Wonderful, new, lovable characters
You still hoard that mouse away

The rest of our commons caged
By your greed

Synesthesia of the Soul

Number 17 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an article about a couple in Guatemala whose dance videos, in the wake of their daughter’s death, went viral.

Rhythm
rocks along the ankles
Hips
harmonize the heart

The body becomes
Music
Movement
Revolution

Oh.

The Biggest Rats

Number 16 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an article about a giant rat winning an award for helping to clear landmines.

The world will be fine
When we are gone
If we leave them
Anything behind

No more prizes
Or accolades
For all the good boys
Out there

No more treats
For the trick of
Sitting on a
Landmine

Yes.
The world will be fine
Without us.

Palm

Number 15 in 30 in 30, a series of writing challenges. Over the course of 30 days (sometimes even in a row!), I will draft a post within 30 minutes. This 30-day theme is: News Stories. Today’s writing was inspired by an AP investigation in labor abuses in the palm oil industry.

Trees stretch
Heavenward
Eking out from the sun’s
Rays all the
Evergreen lost
In the pockets of
Supervisors, traffickers, CEOs
None to those below
Obscured by the canopy
Encaged, enraged, by circumstance
Tethered to a land, a
Host they cannot trust
Invisible to
Customers grabbing products in the malls, on
Amazon, in local shops,
Living their best lives
Concerned but unconcerned about the
Oppressed beyond their borders
Never seeing the
Serfdom in their palms
Unaware of the deaths they hold
Modernity’s requirements
Palm trees sway
Tipped by the gust of
Indonesian winds
On and on, they trek, the lost ones,
Never ceasing
Unable to escape
No one sees the fear
Dyed in their
Eyes, etched in the
Ridges of their faces, the
Cost of something so cheap
As the filler in my candy,
Put down the scythe,
Ill built for this work,
Take up the loom
And weave all the
Lost ones back
Into our fabric,
Share and
Make the world anew