Monday, January 30, 2017

Let #phenology brighten your days

This past week or so has made the downside of being a public policy junky obvious to me. I can do without hearing the phrase "constitutional crisis," which is becoming more prevalent in the social media I follow. But that same media brought some good news to go with the fact that this morning's snow has, so far, been little more than a dusting. We'll see what the rest of the day brings.

First, Spring has officially begun in the southern states, complemented up North here by egg-laying eagles. It's getting to be time to add the Journey North Monarch Butterfly Migration to the sidebar on this blog.

Spring Index: 1/29/17

Second, a photographer I follow on Twitter has a recent blog posting about Progress versus Growth that contains both some wonderful photos and a great quote from Ed Abbey.

Third, The Writer's Almanac informed me in an email that they had noted Ed Abbey's birthday last year.

So, as often happens, the world provides us with a mixed bag of pluses and minuses. I already miss how great it was when we were governed by an administration that didn't rely on "alternative facts." As a further "pick me up," I think I need to see what my local libraries have by Ed Abbey that I haven't yet read. Meanwhile, Illegitimi non carborundum. Many of the goals we're working toward have been problems for a long time. Just ask Woody Guthrie. Doesn't make it right, but requires patience and persistence. I've always been better at the second of those.

Deportee
(aka. "Plane Wreck at Los Gatos")


Words by Woody Guthrie, Music by Martin Hoffman


The crops are all in and the peaches are rott'ning,
The oranges piled in their creosote dumps;
They're flying 'em back to the Mexican border
To pay all their money to wade back again

Goodbye to my Juan, goodbye, Rosalita,
Adios mis amigos, Jesus y Maria;
You won't have your names when you ride the big airplane,
All they will call you will be "deportees"

My father's own father, he waded that river,
They took all the money he made in his life;
My brothers and sisters come working the fruit trees,
And they rode the truck till they took down and died.

Some of us are illegal, and some are not wanted,
Our work contract's out and we have to move on;
Six hundred miles to that Mexican border,
They chase us like outlaws, like rustlers, like thieves.

We died in your hills, we died in your deserts,
We died in your valleys and died on your plains.
We died 'neath your trees and we died in your bushes,
Both sides of the river, we died just the same.

The sky plane caught fire over Los Gatos Canyon,
A fireball of lightning, and shook all our hills,
Who are all these friends, all scattered like dry leaves?
The radio says, "They are just deportees"

Is this the best way we can grow our big orchards?
Is this the best way we can grow our good fruit?
To fall like dry leaves to rot on my topsoil
And be called by no name except "deportees"?


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