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GATHERING at the CENTER GATHERING at the CENTER
by David Sparenberg
2020-06-20 10:33:31
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This poem was originally written on request and publicly recited by then Seattle Major, Norm Rice (a Black American) for the reopening of Key Arena and the Founders’ Fountain at the Seattle Center on 28 October 1995.  At that time, what the poem expresses was an aspiration shared by the Mayor and me.  Norm Rice did not make a speech on the occasion but effectively and with emotion read the poem to a sizeable gathering of citizens.  Are we now, finally, coming into the hour of history when the aspiration of such words becomes shared reality? 

Throughout the ages we have traveled,
bearing the burdens and suspicions of history,
blinded to one another
and to the miracles of the living planet.

gath001_400Men and women, women
men, with one eye closed, with one
ear deafened by self-absorption.  Never
aware of one another’s dreams, barely
aware of our own intruding footsteps. Yet

searching, somehow seeking, destined
to discover the mythic center that is
the heart of all thriving hearts, that is
the elemental bonding of planetary chemistry.

Now I am here,
today, alive on this ground, beneath
this great Northwestern sky, finding
my humanity extended through the diversity
of all that lives and shares.  It

lives.  And he and she, and this
vast excellence of ordinary otherness abides,
surrounds me.  And I (as I have said) am here.
Here, where water leaps and where stone,
crafted, rises in athletic postures. Where
the flame of artful love kindles a
warmth of storytelling truth to ease
our nervous and our embarrassed souls.

Throughout all,
all those epoch, those eras, those eons, those
faulted mirrors of misperception and
rude misjudgments, we have traveled, generation
by generation—now, here

no longer bear or man distinct, no longer wolf
or woman outlawed, not orca here and children there; not
black or white, not brown or red, but
opening friendship’s deepest harmony, here,
at this center, in this space gathered, in
this articulate hour

when we offer our hands in the circle of life,
of emotional geometry, when we have
wings as well as arms, when we share joys
along with sorrows.

At this center; at this
spot, as a democracy
of mythographers.  Before this water; this
yielding water; as a convocation
of sojourners.  And beside each true
and witnessing tree, as a generation
of evergreens and as simple inhabitants
of one, all-mother earth.

**********************************

Check David Sparenberg's NEW BOOK
The Fate Of The Poets - Selected poems 1974-2019
is online now and you can download for FREE HERE!

life_110_400

**********************************

Also Check David Sparenberg's THE GREEN TROUBADOUR
A Source Book of Performance Ecosophy
download for FREE HERE!

life_30_400

 ******************************************************

David Sparenberg has also 2 more Books in the Ovi Bookshelves,
"Life in the Age of Extinctions volume 2 – Threshold"
Download for FREE HERE!

life_03_400

 


       
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