Endless Shore

A Broad Sky

 

Wandering white wisps

meander above

Horizon due west

Line unbroken

between peripheries

Sea of mysteries

cloaked in harmony

with gravity

Playing it cool:

tranquil

Blue, gray, green –

ultra-marine:

emotional hues,

thoughts and dreams

Transition peaceful

gentle lapping sounds

ethereal

parade of pups

perhaps

Lap, lap, lap:

salivating

salty foam,

sand, shells, and pebbles

To shore

for sure

they return once more

Circle of life

A solitary witness

speculative

Loves me, loves me not

No one to see

if she chose not to be

cloaked in black wool

strolling towards the sea

(*note: inspired by photographic image from Carrie Mae Weems entitled “A broad an Expansive Sky – Ancient Rome from Roaming, 2006)

 

© JW Thomas

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Grandfather’s lesson

sad indian2

 

Grandfather

            no like talk

            with exception

            one only

            inquisitive child

Mentors

            like to teach

            oral tradition

            storyteller

            narration

Ancestors

            cultural cues

            inflection

            emotion

            Matchimanitou

Depth of reason

            harmony

            one with Earth Mother

            Sky Father

            four seasons

Deception

            tricks

            magical

            Trickster

            Coyote

Peyote

            vision quest

            cannot hide

            Spirit Guide

            connection

Warrior Way

            predator

            at a loss

            out of time

            out of prey

The World

            contemporary

            progress

            civilized

            so they say

Education

            prized

            dangled

            before eyes

            enough to appease

Era of “please”

            still compete

            against thyself

            and thine own

We still call

            reservations “home”

Have we not learned – anything?

Metis’: bred in a barrio

 

Choctaw, Cherokee, and Welsh: a fair-skinned metis’ raised in the bowels of a Southern California barrio in the culture of Ramirez, Romo, and Reyes: friend and foe.

Inca, Mayan, Aztec, and a cut of Spanish with Apache, Tex-Mex, and Mestiso sexed-in for good measure; a hot-blooded community communicating in Spanglish, fiestas, murals, music, faith, and blood.

The sixties generation got lost in the translation; no middle-class LSD and grass; no peace, free love, and have a flower… just poverty and shotgun blasts, and street love by rape, position, or hour.

No one was feelin’ groovy, there was no purple haze – except pollution – though some existed hollow and numb, and stumbled through their days with tequila shots, cactus juice, and cheap-ass wine that rotted their insides.

No hippies ever found our hood, but hipsters walked the block in flared-out fashion that cost all their cash… so they always tried to hustle a buck.

I saw flower-power VW bugs only on TV between Lone Ranger and Tonto and the Cisco Kid, or Speedy Gonzales at three.

I tried to like Bonanza because of Little Joe, and Johnny Madrid in Lancer really stole the show; but while they placated my fair-skin side my indigenous side felt a twinge.

The color-code in the Hollywood West, in fact, every period and place, told half of me to live with pride and the other half in disgrace – but only if I chose to buy what they were selling.

I shunned the used car tact – sell the sizzle not the bacon – I’d rather see truth, common sense, hope, and a genuine connection.

I favor a new direction in a life I choose to lead.

 

© JW Thomas

Metis’

I am of two peoples

I am mixed-blood

One people call me Metis’

One people call me Half-Breed

But all my blood is red

I am told I’m Welsh

I have never lived in Wales

I have never even seen Wales

except those in the sea

I am told I’m Indian

I have reservations regarding many things

I have visited many reservations

I have even made reservations

But I have never lived on one

Am I Welsh without seeing Wales?

Am I Indian without residing on a reservation?

Heritage is inherited

so I am told

My father’s blood

My mother’s blood

They have intercourse within me

 

© JW Thomas

Masters of the World?

[Thoughts for Earth-Day.]

 

Can we tell the four winds when, where, and how to blow?

Can we tell Otter he must be as solemn and thoughtful as Great Horned Owl… or prove to Barn Owl it is us “Who-who” he seeks?

Can we tell Hawk and Eagle to soar no more?

Can we tell Rabbit that procreation with such fervor merely soils his reputation, and casts no shame upon us for our limited output?

Can we ground Bee indefinitely because he does not meet our aviation specifications?

Can we have Firefly’s light show cancelled in order to conserve energy?

Can we command noble Thunder to whisper his love-song to Lady Lightning? Or demand Wolf cease debating with Moon? Or arrest Winter when he loiters till June?

Can we insist Salmon spawn downstream because swimming upstream is suicide?

Can we tell Black Widow and Praying Mantis to forego patricide while never questioning our use of insecticide?

Can we order Sky Father, Earth Mother, and Old Man River to “heal thyself” so we need not be bothered?

Can we tell stars that if they must twinkle it must now be in Morse code?

Can we tell Cock and Hen that chickens are now banned from crossing the road? And, of course, it has nothing to do with an aversion to those on the other side.

Can we tell primates to stop monkeying around, and proclaim we’ll never patronize their monkey business?

And can we tell Ant that all work and no play is soooo… twentieth century?

Can we say all this and more?

We can… we have… to no avail.

Perhaps we do not have as much control as we would like to believe.

Masters of the world?

You decide.

Sexiest Gardner 3

© JW Thomas

If I Told You

 

If I told you I dreamed life into being would you see possibility?

If I told you I fell from the sky when Poacher slew Eagle would you understand the feather hat band?

If I told you I gave a hero’s name to a coward in the guise of an imposter do you think the truth is better left unspoken?

If I told you I fathered my father as he fathered his, yet my son fathered no one, can you tell me how I came to be?

If I told you a hunter shot an arrow through my heart on the day that I was prey; pray tell me, please, how this buck loved the hunter ever-more?

If I told you I was noble with royal ancestry and blue-blood in my veins, could you understand the blessing of living in poverty from my birth?

If I told you I had an introspective talk with Bear, while Coyote conversed with Hare, and Crow played paddy-feathers with Hawk, could you tell me which was worthy to remember?

If I told you I carved totems of the ancient ones while blindfolded in the bowels of Mother Earth, can you guess my connection to you?

If I told you I’ve saved lives and gave life, will it cleanse me for those I’ve killed? And if I told you life is death and death is life, can you reason beyond the madness?

If I told you I am coming home, will you die for me? And on the day that I depart, do you promise to live again?

If I told you I’ve lied the truth and built truth out of lies, can we agree I’m an honest man?

If I told you that I love you, would you see me now anew and know you hold the key to all I’ve said?

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© JW Thomas

Ghost of lives lived

Revolutionary Doubt 1b0001

My father’s father survived a war torn land as a child but could not survive the war that raged within him.

My father’s mother carried the weight of a broken generation on frail shoulders and fed it with pockets full of imitation love.

My father perpetually relived the death of his dreams till Death finally came for him.

My maternal grandfather built the Interstate of Integrity through the Badlands of prejudicial injustice.

My mother’s mother was born to please Earth with her scent – like Night Blooming Jasmine – only to be gone by morning.

My mother lived her life for others except for a momentary lapse that left her a lone wolf without a pack.

I live as a ghost in a life of lies built on the expectations of others.

 

© JW Thomas