The currency of the WEB OF LIFE is not money,
not time, but MUTUAL BENEFIT, a back-and-forth
of interdependence, this free-flow of energy.
MEASURE leads to COMPARISON, leads to the COMPETITION
fueled by the much-will-have-more of desire and greed.
MY possessions, MY money, MY petty accomplishments.
Freedom begins where the counting ends.
Solar will replace oil as easily as digital cameras
replaced their analog counterparts. It’s hard to stop
what’s better in almost every way.
Burnt fingers with
my boiling morning coffee
tipping over into my hobo’s fire.
Some days begin better than others.
I return to camp,
and somebody’s made off
with my ice axe, sleeping bag,
and alpine stove.
What is one to do?
There are crooks on Wall Street,
and in the dark inner recesses of Congress,
and now, there are crooks in these mountains
of winding waters and light . . .
So we do our best, together, and alone,
to keep the fire alive,
for uncertain, leaner times.
If we think of problems as circles, then primary problems
are the widest circles we can think about. They shape
and condition the whole of an era, and necessarily challenge
us with all the unavoidable force of necessity. In the current
era, by far the most central of primary problems, arguably
subsuming in its way both the self-evident Climate Crisis
and the great and present troubled shift to a world-wide
regenerative energy social economy, is the problem of
violence, violence against oneself, against others, and
violence against the living Earth.
(ii) We are only truly together with one another insofar
as we are alive to, and share the same sense of urgency
about, the same set of primary problems.
God’s shutter releases, every century, or two.
First, we see pristine forests, mountains, and rivers.
Then, we see a picture of children with fiddles and guitars,
and fat cattle and ranches with fences of neat, shiny, wire.
Next, we see a picture with old broken down trucks
and down fences, with tumble weed and black garbage bags
piling up around the open doors of abandoned houses.
Then, we see again pristine forests, mountains, and rivers.
The shutter releases, every century, or two.
Some cultures do not mind their Capital
until it’s almost spent.
Others, do not care for their Rivers and Forests
until they are almost gone.
Oh America of the North, of the silver dollar of wilderness,
what will you leave your children?—but a tarnished nickel
of true forest, but two pence worth of a whole continent
once shimmering with free-flowing streams.
This they receive from us, and yet is they who
must pay the bills for the mountains of waste
we leave behind.