Thursday, April 8, 2010

Hello Bonjour

I don’t need a passport to walk on this earth
Anywhere I go ’cause I was made of this earth
I'm born of this earth, I breathe of this earth
And even with the pain I believe in this earth....

'cause every bit of land is a holy land
and every drop of water is a holy water
and every single child is a son or a daughter
of the one earth mama and the one earth papa

Michael Franti, Hello Bonjour below

I got to watch a carpenter bee for a bit this afternoon.

He was patrolling his patch of Earth--he'd hover in one spot, occasionally changing the direction he faced with a curt shift. He has inspected me enough to know I am not a problem. He no longer bumps into me when I wander too close to his post.

(While the males do not sting, it is still unnerving to have an insect bounce off your forehead.)

As other flying critters entered his territory, he would chase them off. Except the lady bug. Lady bugs, at least this one, did not appreciate the ferocity of the big bumble, and went about its business.

I grew up hearing various reasons why other beings exist. Bees exist to give us honey. Spiders exist to eat the mosquitoes that plague us. Bacteria exist to help us digest food.


Not once did I hear a teacher say beings exist because, well, just because. Who knows? I grew up learning about a mechanistic universe that exists to serve humans. What I learned in school did not jive with what I learned outside. If children no longer go outside, how will they come to realize the lies we tell them?

I want to play this for biology class--obviously I cannot, but if anyone can recommend a song with a similar sentiment safe for the classroom, let me know. (The sentiment might not be safe in any guise....)

I killed an oyster yesterday. It was on a stone jetty, already half buried in the sand, doomed, as we all are. I wanted to use it for bait, but I knew better. Oysters are too fragile to sit on hooks. Whatever possessed the mariner to slay his albatross possessed me.

Last night I dreamed I was given a big oyster. A huge oyster. 2 feet wide, 4 feet tall. I wandered around town looking for someone to tell me what to do with my oyster, but nobody had a good answer. I woke up before I could return it to the sea.

I killed an oyster yesterday. It was probably several years old. It survived the winter storms. I thought about eating it. I did not.

This is an interesting world, but not a safe one, at least not for individual oysters or individual humans or individual carpenter bees.

It has proven remarkably safe, though, for life. Over 3 billion years worth of lives have survived here, through comets and earthquakes and volcanoes, through cosmic rays and solar flares, through ice ages and past global warmings.

That I get to be even a tiny part of it makes me grin like the Cheshire Cat....


Pearls of wisdom... said...

The world is your oyster, Doyle.

Maybe the writing prompt du jour might be: "You are a carpenter bee. You see a human, and think to yourself: Humans exist to serve bees. I know this because:..." And flip the whole "dominion" thing around.

And, why can't you show that video? Is there bad language I missed, or nudity?

doyle said...

I like the prompt, and may use it once June rolls around. Or maybe I'll just drag their June-drugged bodies out to the Green and look for honeybees.

The video is overtly religious (though not denominational). Or maybe it's not. I'm blinded by my love of the song. Still, any song that talks about major religions killing each other "because God told us to" might be misconstrued out of context.

I like what I do--I hope to keep doing it.

Kelly said...

Oh. Still...! One of my favorite mentors told me, "Rule number one: Don't get Mrs. S fired!"