[ mediums for activism ]



Poeticising the performing self

"Words themselves can become acts of beauty that awaken and strengthen our commitment to living our soul's desires"
(Oriah Mountain Dreamer, 2001: 14)

Poetry can offer many things to the mind, heart and spirit. It can have many voices and tones mixed with a delicate array of personal experience, metaphor, irony, analogy, myth to suggest new strategies, approaches, a different perspective, a personal opinion. For many, it is the language of the soul.

Poetry does not reach out to us all. Perhaps because it is often seen as romantic in nature and might seem all a bit airy fairy for the logical mind. Indeed it can come across like this and do find myself have that reaction at times. However, there is so much poetry out there that is not romantic in nature and, for example, using wit and humour poetically to combat political structures. Not all poetry resonates with me just that same as all music doesn't resonate with me. There is some writings/poetry that has moved me in phenomenal ways such as doing more for an environmental issue and things like that.

The Summer Day

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean-
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

Mary Oliver

The poet offers a gift for us to receive. Poems are more than just words but the deep ineffable meaning imbued between the words and lines.

Here is an excerpt from a book "The Earth Speaks" which has an array of poems from writers around the world as well as different periods of times;

Have You Listened to the Earth?

Yes, the earth speaks, but only to those who can hear with their hearts. It speaks in a thousand, thousand small ways, but like our lovers and families and friends, it often sends messages without words. For you see, the earth speaks in a language of love. Its voice is in the shape of a new leaf, the feel of a water worn stone, the color of the evening sky, the smell of the summer rain, the sound of the night wind. The earth's whispers are everywhere, but only those who have slept with it can readily respond to its call.
(Steve Van Matre, 1983: 3)

Poetry is a powerful thing in that it allows the observer to conjure their own visuals, which can create sense of ownership. I often find myself adding my own layers of meaning when I read poetry.

Poeticising my performing self...

Through my personal poetry, I draw upon the language of aesthetics between myself and nature. My poems live in and for the sensuous. Through my poetry I reveal my intimate connection with nature. Although I have rarely ever shared my poetry for it is very personal to me. In a public arena it may be viewed as potentially effecting how others see and relate to their environment and perhaps even create positive feelings relating to existing connections with place. I would like to take this moment to share some of my writings with you...

The Dance of her

A butterfly twirls around me in harmonious play,

A leaf hip hops down the rock revealing the invisible dance of the wind.

A fish swivels in the river's currents.

Mysterious birds meander acrobatically through the sky.

Frantic flies frolic frivolously in endless endeavor...

Water reflection engulfs a nearby rockface creating euphoric patterns in a language of its own kind.

Majestic trees gently glide their limbs creating soft music with their foliage.

The dance of her, sychromystic in all its glorious forms.


As the rain pours down on me,

I look out at the outside world - warm and completely comfortable I exist now

And forever within my own entity;

But right now,

In this easily attainable moment I exist as one,

As one whole entity that flows and is one within itself.

I look out at nature and words need not be spoken between us in this moment as we are one.

One in all, we know our own thoughts and mysterious actions mirror one another.