Earth Reciprocity: Offerings
For the last few years, I've celebrated my Earth birth day as a time for ritual and Earth reconnection in community. ⠀
In 2013, I hosted a grief ritual in the Golden Gate Park: "to the indigenous mind, celebrating and grieving are not so separate; death and (re)birth follow each other; we can celebrate because we have mourned; we shed tears and what has ended/is ending, and into that lightness other beginnings can move in."⠀
In 2014, I hosted a "tipsy" divination party - "just as the playful and the sacred are constantly tipping into each other." ⠀
In 2015, I organized a cleanup of the Golden Gate Park. ⠀
In 2017, I invited people to join me in making an Earth mandala in the Golden Gate Park. ⠀
In 2018, I hosted Jasmine Fuego's Emergence House Concert - a stunning evening of music and ritual!⠀
In 2019, I was in India, on the land of my blood ancestors. ⠀
This year is different. We are moving through times of consequence. I am noticing, in my various communities, how the smallest incident becomes an instigation, a conflagration, burning up what needs to be cleansed. ⠀
On my solar return tomorrow - and the rest of this week - would you join me in making offerings to the Earth? Offerings: as a way to pray, to harmonize ourselves with Earth energies, to acknowledge and return ourselves into relationship with the nonhuman and more-than-human worlds, to feed the portals of our belonging and empowerment. ⠀
Ideas for offerings: milk, water, spirits or other ritual fluids, flowers, herbs, seeds, stones, shells, feathers, other offerings or materials gleaned with love from nature that can be returned to nature. Perhaps your offerings will take the form of a mandala, rangoli, alpana, kolam. ⠀
If you would like to share photos of your offerings, I'll be posting a link to a Wordpress site I'm still building, where we can record and archive our collective prayers. Here is to regenerating our relationships with the Earth and the nonhuman realms with our love. ⠀
Poetry does nothing. Poetry does everything.
I am very proud and honored to be in the Monsoon issue of Almost Island, which feels both of the times and timeless.
With Anne Waldman, Adil Jussawala, Jennifer Robertson, and Medha Singh in the poetry section, and prose selections from Mantra Mukim, Ashis Nandy, Allan Sealy, and David Albahari.
Thank you to Souradeep Roy and the editors of Almost Island for this sparkling issue.
Here is the beginning poem from Evie Shockley's semiautomatic, a collection that uses formally innovative strategies and tradition (including the blues) with glee and ferocity to lift up black experience and give testimony to the violence against black lives and black bodies.
In her book of criticism Renegade Poetics: Black Aesthetics and Formal Innovation in African American Poetry, Shockley writes, "I propose that we think of not a black aesthetic' or the Black Aesthetic, but of "black aesthetics," plural: a multifarious, contingent, nondelimited complex of strategies that African American writers may use to negotiate gaps or conflicts between their artistic goals and the operation of race in the production, dissemination, and reception of their writing."
I am so glad to have a Process Profile on the Lantern Review Blog for the poem "Nani's Letter." I admire LR so - its vision, its aesthetic, its editors, and the tremendous work they do in extending the zones for APA poetry. I am glad to have known LR for the ten years it has been around!
The poem, which was part of my dissertation, had appeared earlier this year in Kajal Magazine. In writing it, the inquiry I was holding was about how to write at/from the borderlands about the motherline and grandmothers, de/colonization, and stories that came through or did not during the Partition of India. Read the Process Profile here.
Bay Area Poets Reading
You can now watch Elizabeth Robinson, Mia Ayumi Malhotra, Randy Prunty, Susanne Dyckman, and me read. We recorded this video as part of the New Orleans (Virtual) Poetry Festival, in lieu of the poetry reading that would have been part of the New Orleans Poetry Festival.
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