"We give thanks to all the Waters of the world for quenching our thirst and providing us with strength. Water is life. We know its power in many forms—waterfalls and rain, mists and streams, rivers and oceans. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to the spirit of Water.
"Now our minds are one."
|North Country water|
Photo by J. Harrington
The Smithsonian exhibit Water/Ways opened this past weekend at the Audubon Center of the North Woods in Sandstone. Many Minnesotans have close, caring relationships with water. Others see it as just another exploitable resource. I would be very thankful if we could find a way, as the Iroquois did, to bring our warring tribes into a peaceful confederation. Maybe we can each try on Thursday by remembering to start with gratitude that we can be together and be well fed. That's more than many in this world have, and more than some will ever have. When was the last time you compared your life to Franklin D. Roosevelt's Four Freedoms, to see how it stacks up? Do you have:
Photo by J. Harrington
Since the last election, more and more of us seem to be suffering from a loss of freedom from fear and freedom of worship. Wasn't it the promise of attainment of each of these freedoms, for each of us, that made America great? Enjoyment of each of these freedoms by every one of us comes at no expense to any of us. We seem to have a penchant for forgetting that. Thursday would be a wonderful time to start remembering. What's it going to cost you to get along with that damned liberal or conservative relative who knows nothing and likes it that way? Recognizing our own relatives as human beings with whom we share this planet is a step in the direction of a broader recognition of the humanity of all "others." Try it. It might feel weird but it shouldn't hurt (too much). Water can serve to wash away differences as well as sins.
By Maya Angelou
A free bird leapson the back of the windand floats downstreamtill the current endsand dips his wingin the orange sun raysand dares to claim the sky.But a bird that stalksdown his narrow cagecan seldom see throughhis bars of ragehis wings are clipped andhis feet are tiedso he opens his throat to sing.The caged bird singswith a fearful trillof things unknownbut longed for stilland his tune is heardon the distant hillfor the caged birdsings of freedom.The free bird thinks of another breezeand the trade winds soft through the sighing treesand the fat worms waiting on a dawn bright lawnand he names the sky his ownBut a caged bird stands on the grave of dreamshis shadow shouts on a nightmare screamhis wings are clipped and his feet are tiedso he opens his throat to sing.The caged bird singswith a fearful trillof things unknownbut longed for stilland his tune is heardon the distant hillfor the caged birdsings of freedom.
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Please be kind to each other while you can.