Black Moon : One, Two, Three, Four

…Tell me what are we fighting for?

two-toweringYes, the second new moon of the month, the “black moon” rose invisibly this morning — lost in the rosy first rays of the sun.  (No, ABC, you twits, it will not rise “tonight” — new moons rise in the dawn, one reason they are invisible in the sun’s glare – also because the bright reflective side is facing the sun, not earth!)  As I promised, I rose, and prepared to try to “change reality in accord with my Will.”  This new moon is in the sign Libra — the scales.  You know, like Lady Justice allegedly holds?  Does the toll of black bodies not yet outweigh white fears and misperceptions to balance those scales?

I bathed, watching steam rise in the unheated September air.  I dressed in black, red, and white — colors I often choose for magical work, but more than usually today as my sleepy mind paraphrased Joan Baez singing about Biko to be, “…at night I only dream in red; the outside world is black and white, with only one color dead. Oh, because…because…because…”

Are there two Americas?  One for whites and one for non-whites?  It is my paraphrase “because” that lit the candles of my mind to craft my working with the energies I gathered yesterday — looking up at towering twin trees, both lightening blasted at their tops — like the Tower of Tarot.

oneAmerica decried apartheid in South Africa.  But here at home, de facto segregation and educational/economic apartheid is very real and an unspoken blight upon what our nation meant to be in my youth.  We don’t confront the ideas that don’t match our action, do we? The storm we refuse to see coming can fell us all the same?  What light can shine into our minds to warn us?

One – if the element Air flows betwixt us all, does it carry/bear witness to all those who respire, aspire, conspire on this solitary blue sphere in the void of space?

Air carry my my thought,

Black lives and white lies matter,

See through dark fear’s fog!

twoTwo – the very Earth beneath our feet, the earth that trembles beneath armies and soaks up the blood of our ignorance and turmoil, is the basis of our life.  What could it bring to live out of fertile blood spilled?

Earth run energy,

As a seismic wave of change,

Germinate justice!

Three – our emotions flow as fast and changeable as the element Water, reflecting things true and illusory.  Is it too easy to not feel what isn’t happening to you?  Your blood is as red as the blood being shed from darker skins, is it not?  How is it that your white face does not flush with grief?

Water seep redly,

Crack the privileged hearts,

Paint empathy there!

threeFour – is our Will, our ability to work for change and progress as hot as it should be?  Is it the Fire in our lives, lighting the dark rotten hollows we never look at?  Do we quail before the task, thinking it too vast?  I walked the length of a fallen giant yesterday – reciting to myself, “The bigger they are, the harder they fall.”  And yes, any small breeze of beginning can catch in the wind to be a bigger fire.  Light a light –give it the wind of change to burn away the wrong?

Firepower by gun,

But not for every color?

Turn against that Fire!

Can we, Americans, recognize that there are many trees that make a forest; many peoples to make a nation?  And that if one tree falls in a forest, more trees grow from that loss; but in a nation that chooses to repeatedly burn down only certain people, what grows from that might burn down a nation?

That invisible black moon is high in the noon sky, as invisible, alas, as the insidious secret bias and racism and fear of “otherness” that blights and ends black lives in America.  The blaze of the sun hides every new moon, sadly like “all lives matter” non-sequitors try to hide that black lives matter because THOSE are the lives being TAKEN.  

But that moon is there.  Pulling tides and fault lines, invisible and easy to ignore until the moment when it blazes from the sunless sky — white as the lies privileged America prefers to cold brutal truth and grief and death.  Embrace that black moon, it is the monster we carry unacknowledged and uncontrolled.  Face your fears, destroy the lies, empathize and stop the killing!

 

Gathering Energies

fuzzy-logicTomorrow the “black moon” rises, invisible — the second “new” moon in the month of September.  I’ve been thinking of what kind of pagan I am.  Deities are an unknown quantity for me; I’m more or less agnostic as my brain over-rules my own mystical content in life most of the time.  I guess the joking name “polydeist” works well enough; if gods and goddesses exist – this planetary “ball of wax” is still OUR baby to manage.  Even in my long-term attempt at Catholic life (age 17 to 34), I prayed only as meditation — never because I believed in prayers being answered.

And yet, too many times, something inexplicable has happened in my life.  Often this follows my own fumbling, sometimes faltering efforts at what others have often called “magic” – so I can’t entirely discount the possible existence of some flow of energy in the world; a flow that we may be able to intercept and turn to our own desire.  Thus, like a mad metaphysical scientist, I do experiment from time to time.  Especially since, as history tells me, when no ordinary methods work — women have so often allegedly turned to magical attempts.  After all, it isn’t as if I have anything to lose, is it? I do believe in human action.

gold-leaf-lightI’ve been sickened and incensed by news month after month of black men, teens, and children being shot by police officers.  Just this week, two men with mental issues confronted cops — one lived and one died.  Do I need to tell you the color of the skin of the man who was killed; though the man who survived threatened police with a visible gun?  So what better time to enact magic, to call on the very elements of the world around us to move in accord with a Will that would see Americans face their invisible bias and the systemic racism that is killing black Americans?  A black moon for black lives that matter!

power-cedarSo, today, we drove to Mt. Rainier/Tahoma.  I walked among the massive trees of the “Grove of the Patriarchs” — reaching, touching, collecting mental images and the sensations like one shopping for ingredients.  The fuzzy lichens and mosses on the big trees remind me of the fuzzy “logic” I want to sweep out of American minds, for intance.

fungal-whiteI thought of the golden light of the fall maple leaves being the light coming on in  minds.  I thought of the pure soft white fungus, looking so vulnerable in the dark wood of fallen trees as white fears — unacknowledged and fear-fueling.

I thought of stress lines in American cities, and looked at where the bark fell away from fallen giants to see the wood itself scarred and broken.  I thought of the towering cedar, the tree local Amerindians think of as having to powerstress-lines to bury and imprison evil.  I touched shattered trees, and thought of the shattering of lives every time a black life does not matter enough to a police officer.  I thought of the shattered family of a six year old white boy, killed last November, when two black cops shot at the car in which the child rode with his father being non-compliant to police commands. douglas-roughI thought how that community must feel now that those officers are facing murder charges.  I thought of how many black communities and families wonder why white police officers face no charges for killing black children, like Tamir Rice?

I thought of the roughness, the texture of feeling and hurt, and touched the rough surface of a giant Douglas fir.  I thought of mothers, white or black, fearing for children and looked at a giant fallen log with over a dozen new trees growing tall upon its fallen side.  These young trees spout on upright living trees of great age — when the trees fall, the saplings re-orient and reach upward for the sun and continue growing upon the dead body of the “nurse tree” that nurtured them.  nurse-logWhat can America nurture if we try that hard to deal with life and death in both colors?

What if we all thought about the fact that everyone dies, but asked why some die so young, so early?  What if we asked how to save those lives?  What if EACH American saw their own life as a “nurse” to other lives instead of living in isolated pools of fear and unacknowledged bias?  drill-inwardWhat if we drilled inward from our own scarring, as I picked away at a felled giant to reveal the beauty even in that fall?  hat wonders of understanding would we reveal?  Tomorrow the black moon rises; I will take my stored energy, my visual cues, my angry hopeful heart and dive into the death of hope to find something in the darkness to heal and meld us into better things.  Who will go with me, into the dark, to bring back the growing strengthening light of the new moon — in a bright crescent-to-be to cut away the fear, hate, and hurt?

Enough!

coffee goldSometimes, even a nice liberal, humanistic pagan lady like myself just hits the mental brakes.  Mind you, I am plenty capable of thinking some folks label “fuzzy”. (Though, in my defense?  I would say it is seldom warm, ok?)

My husband and I don’t have much in the way of disposable income.  We help our two disabled veteran sons survive by covering them with our roof, our utilities, groceries, and some help with insurance.  We might have a major remodeling upgrade in the future and our well is sooner or later going to cost a small fortune.  So, we try to enjoy life without going crazy in terms of consumer gullibility.

That said, I do buy organic produce more often than not and organic meat.  I have a host of food allergies and sensitivities that lead me to believe that I am better off not further pissing off my tetchy irritable immune system.  I don’t use pesticides and herbicides in my yard.  I limit my junk food choices to rare binges.  I try to live responsibly, reasonably, progressively.

But there are limits.  Today, driving* to meet a friend for walking, I saw a reader board outside a small hardware store:

“ORGANIC HARDWOOD CHARCOAL”

Seriously?  Mind you, they aren’t talking medicinal capsules.  No, this is briquettes for the grill.  Organic hardwood charcoal.  Right.  Because one has to assume that if one is trying to be organic in life more often than not, grilling might be a bit more rare because of the carcinogenic compounds formed BY cooking meat over flaming hunks of once-wood?

So, really, what good would it do to use organic charcoal?  Do you then only get organic cancer?  And hey, my snarky inquiring mind wants to know — do they shoot nasty smelly product like charcoal lighting fluid onto these oh-so-organic black chunks of charred wood?  Organic hardwood charcoal.  Yeah, my mind is just going to KEEP batting that one around and around like a tetherball.

*Yes, that wraps me round my own axle, too.  To drive somewhere for the purpose of walking — but here, no sidewalks, no trails, no safety from drivers who act like they are having a race for car ownership.

Nearly, And Then Not – This “Spy” For Humanism Cannot Come In From the Cold

LiveI spoke to my best friend amongst the German lunch ladies yesterday.  I have missed two weeks of coffee and lunch with them since the day I shouted at the one loud, bullying, black-lives-matter-detractor and walked out before finishing my soup.   It hurt, walking away, even while angry.  Because from the moment I stood up, I knew I might not ever walk back into a circle of friends.  Sometimes you know a mind is not going to be changed, and to acquiesce is impossible.

I told B. yesterday that I had thought of coming to lunch again — but then two more black men were shot by cops.  And if M. said one freaking smart-assed thing about that, I would do something thermonuclear and that would be bad.  So, no — Thursday will not be spent in a Mexican restaurant so washed out into boringly white flavors that it is not worth the name.   The longer it is before I walk back into that circle of women, the less likely it is that I ever will be amongst them again.

It is hard to be on the outside.  But I cannot be “inside” something if it means silent agreement with something wrong.  I have left jobs over similar things — I quit the German Deli that brought us together over something very much the same.  A beautiful young Moslem woman,  came to work there.  She was a good worker.  But the boss-lady picked on her relentlessly.

I blew up when she was driven back out to the work-floor for the “sin” of daring to take a 20 minute lunch-break, just as all the other women did.  I argued with Frau H.  I told her she was violating Washington State labor law by forbidding this normal lunch time to this single employee.  She blustered.  I persisted.  She told me it was none of my business.  I told her allowing her to abuse that young woman certainly was my business.  She told me she was the boss and could do as she liked.  I took off my apron and told her “Well, if you are going to break the law, I am not going to work for you and thus signal agreement.”  I walked out, with her on my heels asking, “Why can’t we talk about this?”  I turned momentarily and said “We just did talk about this, that is why I am quitting.”

She seemed utterly confused.  That confused me.  What part of  “You are discriminating against this woman, I am calling you on it, stop it!” is unclear?  Was it the idea that just because it wasn’t happening to me, I should have no cause to intervene?  Was it the idea that my skin tone was a shade or two lighter than the picked on younger woman?  Was there a presumption that I was not Moslem, thus should be in agreement with bullying one?

What has happened to humanity – when a person, even with nothing to lose, cannot stand up for someone with everything to lose?  I’m always the one dismissed as an idealistic twit.  Well, that and a “communist damned democrat” in certain circles.  I used to stand and fight bitterly.  Now, I will make my case in a couple lines, delivered with as little heat as possible – and then, when the other side dismisses me, or tries to out-shout me, I simply walk away.  I say to myself “You can’t fix stupid.”  But that is really a dodge, isn’t it?

I don’t believe I can win the fights any more.  Even science seems to find that people don’t want facts, they prefer their comfortable (and often biased) opinions.  It did take the wind out of my sails to find that even allegedly sensible, educated people clung to the death to some pretty horrid, hateful opinions that gave them something psychologically more comfortable than the struggle to deal with facts.

It is cold and lonesome out here on the edges.  Liminality is not nearly so appealing/sexy/edgy in experience as it sounds in stories, you know?  But this is where I will be staying, out here in the cold with the facts.  Luckily?  I know I am not the only one who has fled to the edges.  If I can be as true to the struggle as one of my icons was, if I can, like her, continue “pen still held firmly in her my hands, eyes steadfastly open to the darkness around her me.” – I will find what contentment I can.

Empathy or Apathy? Wherein I Become Angrily Offensive….

I’m not going to call a spade a shovel – I’m going to hit you upside the head with it. Have I got your attention now?

herlander-walking

1sugar shitI live in an open carry state — similar, in that fashion, to North Carolina.  I am white, my grown disabled veteran sons are white.  We own guns in the household.  Do I routinely fear for my sons when they leave the house, leave my sight?  Yes, but undoubtedly not as the wife of a friend has to worry.  Her sons are bi-racial.

Let me be clear, IF my sons left the house openly packing heat?  I would be worried.  I can only imagine my friend with the bi-racial sons would body-block/tackle her boys if either one attempted to leave the house wearing a weapon!  Because even in an open-carry state, that is a fucking death sentence!

Let me be more clear.  A black man doesn’t need to aim a gun at a cop to die.  He can have his hands up but the cops have made up…

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Grateful for Regimens and Protocols – September 20

img_3445What a way to go forth into fall — a fibromyalgia flare has sneaked up on me and dropped me like a dead cat on my own doorstep! Still, I am grateful that I DO know how to do this.  

It is no longer an undiscovered country.  I no longer am afraid when this happens to me, I no longer worry about never getting better.  I know the drill:

Don’t miss vitamins and essential fatty acid supplements.

Drink more water and limit coffee.  Remember that a little alcohol kills pain, but too much adds pain.

Eat what you can get down and not to excess.  Remember your gut hates dairy in flare.  I am very grateful I no longer crave and indulge in sweets binges during flares.

Work in short bursts of opportunity, rest in between.  Watch lots of comedy, laugh a lot.

Take naps.  Go to bed early.

Do yoga, even if at only half the time and effort.

Stop everything when you get dizzy.

Listen to your body when it complains with pain: don’t castigate yourself for failure.  Love and nurture yourself back to health.

Get out into nature more, but no crazy hard hiking.

Curl up in a feather comforter and read when you cannot sleep.

Feed yourself beauty when your gut hurts too much for food.

Grateful for GoFund Me

cup of loveSpecifically, I am grateful people are giving to the fund for the young wife/mother/Army officer was was lit afire by a hateful old male employee.  And yes, since she is Army, her doubtless huge medical costs will be covered.  However, as commenters have pointed out to some very ungracious clueless posters?  Child-care won’t be covered. Bills once covered by HER check, if she is medically discharged won’t be covered.  Family expenses won’t be covered.  And btw, waiting for the military to provide physical aids she might need?  Might take too long so it would be great if that fund covered some of that on the spot.

I’m awaiting payday to donate.  My old Volvo demanded a transmission rebuild this week and so I am broke, broke, broke.  Any Pacific Lutheran grads out there?  She is one of “yours” — so toss some cash in the pot to make her recovery less grueling and worrisome, ok?

Gratitude 17 September (Caturday?)

img_3478This morning, I am grateful for kitten paws on my face in the dim of six in the morning, and the pale dawn light shine on wet patio stones outside my window.

The light is very dim today, the air is fall coolness.  I light up more lamps in the house to counter the gloom.

 

Cat 0600

My hair is not a rat’s nest,

Instead it is a purring cat’s nest,

Her chin rests upon my ear,

Her three pound weight anchors me to pillow,

I wake from a nightmare of human ashes,

A paw pats my cheekbone as a purr announces,

Life and warmth and presence in now,

All the dread past and fearful future?

Collapses into morning’s first meow.