Thursday, September 09, 2004


By Kelsey Shipman

It begins as innocence, in the shape of a child
As a manifestation of the carelessness of the young and the wild
It enters only with the underdevelopment of the some-day astute senses
Squirming through the bouncing of child’s play
Nestling in dampened intuition and the immature dawn of what is almost today
It finds its pulse beneath knowledge in a way so discreet
That even a spy so experienced kisses its shifting feet

It slowly spreads like a wave of anticipation
Finding no comfort in limitation
It begins to boil in your blood, shooting out bubbles of intense misunderstanding
Tainting every world view that approaches conception
Of intimate connection
With the brightening beat of life, finding no individuality in coats or skins
Dismissing the presumption of lack of correlation
Found in the separate territory of the genius of speciesism and the rest of the breathing world
Which is really one in the same, although the frequency of departure will make your toes curl

It invades the mind, closes off the union with our beginnings
Begins to swirl the world’s listless underpinnings
Turning vast lakes and oceans into masses of currents
Disrupting all tranquility
And organizational equanimity
Bridges become dark masses of metal
Not fallen trees or the beaver’s toil
The ground is uprooted and organisms displaced
As the part of us throbbing with the gods’ own reflection falls into waste

The line between ourselves and the things we produce is blurred
Although nature attempts to thwart us, we continue undeterred
Is it us or an irrefutable force that paves the road of inevitable decline
You see, it has weaved so greatly into every fiber of our perception
That it is now inseparable from us as it cultivates a need for destruction
Now lacking distinction between its foolishness and our own
We indiscriminately obliterate without a consideration of the beauty of the unknown

Skies are left in darkness as mortality rears its ugly head
Soulful creatures searching for a rationalization to reason away the looming dread
As we sit among our ruins, with only more to come, we beg the wisdom of our ancestors
And yet it is they who turn to the very essence of our beginnings
That which we have fought against in some contest of obscured winnings
The wisest of the spirit-filled animals offer lessons of humility
But we as conquerors cannot accept the ineptness of our professed abilities

And what more can a mere human do but screech with endless scope
When they feel their whole being squeezed by an ever-tightening rope
The path of the wicked is no different from those invaded by foolishness
Both dismissing the presence of force and strength of mind
Only to crush the once infinite vivacity of their own kind
It is without these they experience the ferocity of animation
Only to worship illusory gods outside the holy realm of creation

The sound waves streak across the sky like an artist’s careful stroke
Entwining patterns of wisdom and elucidation that we never spoke
There is something honest and unfeigned about the gut’s exposed voice
Something which we shroud in discomfort and civility
But that we long for in our oh-so-many times of insecurity
Dark masses impend the horizon and negate glimpses of hope
And only speak to us in echoes of our attempts to cope

So we are left with only a mangled, distorted world
The obvious causes of which we still beg to be unfurled
We release screams in the night as our temporary acknowledgement of what shall come
But it is only the common cries of misery that paint the dim sky with lights
Each with its own story of sudden missing will and might
The individual’s whimper will not dull the Earth’s grief
But the beckoning of the common god in us all can illuminate the direction of peace.


Kelsey is an 18 year old sophomore, history major, attending a university in Texas. She is the daughter of a dear friend of mine, who has been an activist for peace and justice most of her life.


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