~ Susan Goldsworthy ~

[Inspired by Drew Dellinger’s Hieroglyphic Stairway]


We blinked a collective blink

A few decades of distraction

And we find ourselves on the brink-




-Of extinction

-Of our final farewell

With flora and fauna disappearing like lemmings off the proverbial cliff.

Tigers, elephants, polar bears, orang-u-tans, giraffes, butterflies, bees,

Other Insects, coral, plants, and trees

As the natural sounds of the earth, air and seas fall silent

Suffocating in plastic and concrete and waste

How did we not notice…

As we drifted from cosy to comatose

And consumerism, convenience and comfort

Mushroomed like a soft underbelly

Enshrining us in obsolescence

Marvel for a moment 

Then grieve the cost, the loss 

Can we shake off this dystopian nightmare?

What will it take to awaken our ‘napping knowns’

To move us

From denial to awareness

From defence to acceptance

From distraction to action

Harken to those spirits residing deep within 

Attune ourselves to earth’s song

Listen, Look, Learn…

What did we do once we knew?

Did we come together as community

To use our ingenuity

Amidst the detritus of our progressive insanity

Could we connect our collective consciousness

To harvest hope for humanity

To recover, renew and restore

Some semblance of spirituality

Within the realms of our constructed reality


How quickly can we come to our senses

Valuing the small as a vital part of the whole

The seemingly insignificant acts of many

Striking chords that coalesce into a glorious symphony

A universal echo reverberating in our core




We Must Have Faith

~ Francis Briers ~

[visit Francis' spiritual development website

We must have faith

Because to live without it

Is a journey without promise,

A battle without hope,

A night without starlight.


I am convinced

That no matter your code or creed

Your belief or skepticism,

That faith,

A deep abiding trust that there is another side,

Not an end but another phase,

Is a survival need

For the soul.


Some part of us

Even if it is one frozen, trembling hand

Must cling to the mast of the ship

When waves crash over the decks of our lives

As they will

When the storm comes for us.


It is faith

That keeps us afloat

Long enough

To be found

When even the lifeboats have been smashed.


It is faith

That by some fierce magic

Holds us together

When grief

Or pain

Or rage

Or shame

Or bone-deep sorrow

Come to shake us apart.


So have faith dear ones

And know

That no matter how often your heart breaks

Your soul need never be broken.


A Tree Offsite  - Paula Aamli




If this year’s offsite were delivered by trees 

The session 




As the seasons in the woods begin slowly 

Fading into daylight 

As the gentle hubbub of  night fades and the quiet gossiping of the morning rises 

There would be no blaring of alarms 

No strident stop-start

Tearing apart of minute before from minute after 

The morning sessions KPI is presence 

The presence of the fisher heron on the bank of an ornamental pond 



A brim with leashed and pulsingly focussed attentiveness

Our longterm strategy measures itself in the ages of earth 

As dreamed in Thomas Berry’s dream 

This is the 10 thousandth year of the agricultural age

Or or the twelfth thousandth

The 65 millionth year of the mammalian era 

Our unique selling point ?

Intelligent consciousness 

Our reputational risk ?

What we choose to do with this

sharp-toothed gift

Our governance dilemma ?

They tell us that failure sometimes leads to effort 

As effort sometimes leads to failure

And so the business of the day gets underway

Small groups and plenaries convene

Together exploring questions of good commerce in service of the larger life community 

wondering if this time humanity can turn aside from our devouring hunger

Or whether we will 

Once again 

Sell our birthright on this garden planet 

For a mess of stew 

Thomas berry whispers in memory that

a parliament of all creatures would vote humanity out

The trees however council how to deal with failure 

Green leaves bursting from storm felled carcasses  

Ten whip thin branches pushing out from where a lost limb used to be

Wind sculpted forms 

And contorted bodies curved and carved to progress passed boulders 


They show how harsh and beautiful life is how unflinching and how tender


I’m giving up –
Not on life, but on those actions that threaten life
Not on living, but on those habits that distract from living
Not on loving, but on those fears that get in the way of loving

I’m giving up
Food that forges a chain of suffering and death
Clothes that weave a garment of exploitation and shame
Fuels that are harbingers of cancer and climate catastrophe

I’m giving up –
Not on people, but on the poor choices that people make
Not on freedom, but on the complacency that cripples freedom
Not on hope, but on the sense of impotence that kills all hope

I’m giving up –
Words that break down rather than build up others
Work that lacks a greater purpose of improving society
Products that leave a trail of misery and waste in their wake

I’m giving up –
For the good of myself and those who have less than I do
For the good of the planet and those who share its blue-green bounty
For the good of the children and those who will inherent what we leave behind

I’m giving up –
All these things and more –
In my best and brightest and bravest moments –
For good

Giving Up 

~ Wayne Visser ~

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