Sunday, September 11, 2016



I’ll be launching my new book, Three Tides: Writing at the Edge of Being  starting this month, with more appearances scheduled in October and November as follows:

2090 Kittredge Street
Saturday, September  24,  2 - 3:30 PM   

San Rafael Litquake
Downtown San Rafael
Fourth St.  

Saturday, October 8, 3 - 4:15 PM  

Berkeley Fellowship
Cedar at Milvia
Saturday, November 19,  4 – 5:30 PM           



Displacement is the subject of the newsletter this week. Displacement is what
my soon-to-be-published book Three Tides: Writing at the Edge of Being is all about.  All three sections deal with the pressures acting on people everywhere to leave home: leaving an unsustainable way of living (mine); leaving flooded New Orleans (Katrina); and destroying a culture and leaving ancestor graves yawning empty because a toxic waste disposal company lays claim to village land (Japan).

Much closer to home, two crises crowd all other stories to the back pages (except for the selection circus), namely the global refugee crisis brought about by climate collapse and resulting military hostilities (the Middle East) and all European countries  trying to close their doors to the flood of displaced people. It may bring the crisis more clearly into focus to know that one out of every 200children  in the world is now on the run, vulnerable to drowning in the Mediterranean and Adriatic seas; vulnerable to being incarcerated in jails for months on end because refugee camps are already full to overflowing. 


And in the Untied States, the Standing Rock Sioux have been joined by hundreds of other First Nations in a last stand to defend their sacred burial grounds and their drinking water from contamination by the proposed Dakota Pipeline. 

Our people have strived to protect Sacred Sites from the beginning of time. These places have been violated for centuries and have brought us to the predicament that we are in at the global level.

Private security forces have turned the dogs on them, injuring one small child with horrifying facial wounds.   A local judge has ruled against their case.   Governor Dalrymple has called out the national guard, and Jill Stein and her running mate, Ajamu Baraka have been threatened with arrest and warrants have been issued by the Moran County Sheriff’s Office for criminal trespass and vandalism in connection with their weekend trip to Standing Rock, to stand in solidarity with indigenous tribes resisting oil pipeline expansion through their sacred native burial grounds. It’s the first time in U.S. history that a presidential candidate and her running mate have been targeted for arrest. 

To quote Ajamu Baraka: What we need… in North Dakota [is] authentic decolonization. …Indigenous people don’t have full control over their sovereignty,…We are not going to have social justice as long as there’s continuity in this settler colonial project. …All of us are implicated.

As of yesterday, September 10, the federal government stepped in to ask the pipeline company to “pause” action, to voluntarily halt construction temporarily within 20 miles of Lake Oahe, a sacred site of the local tribes.  The snake doesn’t shed its scales easily. The government’s ploy acted to diffuse the threat of more violence by hired security forces and the national guard; and by initiating a delaying tactic, it attempted to disperse the massive resistance gathered together at Standing Rock. 

But this issue will not go away. This newsletter  believes the Sioux stand in the front lines of all the displacement now threatening every one of us: 

We have been displaced by the subprime mortgage crisis from our homes; we have been displaced from our universities by massive tuition hikes; we have been displaced from a reliable banking system now that U.S. law has determined that all monies on deposit are property of the bank, not depositors; we have been displaced from our jobs by offshoring and by trade agreements such as the TPP and the TISA, and by the disproportionate incarceration of people of color for minor drug offences, providing slave labor for the prison/corporate complex; we have been displaced from our streets by free speech zones; we have been displaced from our lives by the use of drones to target/assassinate even American citizens, and by militarized police  who kill people of color with impunity and without judicial consequence; we have been displaced from our wombs by the anti-abortion  agenda of the neocons; we have been displaced from our DNA by continued used of nuclear technology, not only  in lands affected by the use of  uranium tipped ordnance, but on our own soils by nuclear contamination from testing, and from accumulating nuclear waste. 

We all need to pay attention to Chief Arvol Looking Horse’swords:

In our prophecies it is told that we are now at the crossroads: Either unite spiritually as a global nation, or be faced with chaos, disasters, diseases, and tears from our relatives’ eyes.

Know that you yourself are essential to this world. Understanding both the blessing and the burden of that. You yourself are desperately needed to save the soul of this world. Did you think you were put here for something  less? In a Sacred Hoop of Life, there is no beginning and no ending.



                  OAKLAND, OSCAR GRANT PLAZA  5:30 PM

                  ALBANY,  SAN PABLO @ MARIN 4 PM

No comments:

Post a Comment