SIGNS CONFERENCE—2018

Pledge

Pledge

A bright light streams through my window.
I look up to thank the gift of the Sun
whose energy drives our own,
tangled clouds of magnetism blasting from the golden orb.

I pledge allegiance to the coastline,
the meeting of earth and sea, solid and fluid,
to the depths of the oceans
and the life that remains undiscovered,
curiosities for our wonder.

I pledge allegiance to the coastline,
the meeting of earth and sea, solid and fluid,
to the depths of the oceans
and the life that remains undiscovered,
curiosities for our wonder.

I pledge allegiance to the diatoms, carbon fixers,
master architects of glass in our waters,
living snowflakes, swirling, sweeping to infinity.

I pledge allegiance to the ocean, more original than
the origin of species, source of fear and awe,
now suffering herself, polluted.

I pledge allegiance to the ocean, more original than
the origin of species, source of fear and awe,
now suffering herself, polluted, over and over.

I pledge allegiance to the cradle of humanity,
to all the members of our family tree
who have left us clues about our past.

I pledge allegiance to the spaces
where we are welcome.
And I pledge to challenge the status quo
in the spaces where we are not.

To trees, tall and green, I pledge allegiance… 

To trees, tall and green, I pledge allegiance… 

To the call of the loon by the lake. 

To creeks, with their bubbles and gurgles.

I pledge allegiance

to the starry night sky
washed out by bright city lights,
one Galaxy, in brilliance, above all.

I pledge allegiance to the triple helix, the interstitial glue
holding our cells, our selves, together.

I pledge allegiance to the prairie,
I pledge allegiance to the prairie,
root mass vining through native soil,
seed head flags waving in the summer storms.


To fireflies and their flickering sparks 
on humid summer evenings.

To dragonflies and damselflies,
first in flight 300 million years ago,
voracious predators, insect lions,
enigmatic, and powerful.

To the crack of lightning and thunder,
so simple, so complex and biochemical.

I pledge allegiance to leaf cutter bees,
carving sharp crescent voids in redbud leaves.
To territorial carpenter bees hovering near their fence posts.
To all the hardworking Hymenoptera,
tirelessly ferrying life across the ether.

I pledge allegiance to soil, home of free-living
nitrogen-fixing bacteria and fungi,
to the raw, crumbly matter holding the capacity for life.

I pledge allegiance to the gothic cathedrals of caves
their columns of dripping stalactites,
the flapping wings of bats,
a choir echoing through ancient corridors.

I pledge allegiance to resilience and resistance
to our blind, tenacious spirit, ever adapting.

I pledge allegiance to my mountain,
always present in my view.
A touchstone, grounding me,
humbling me with its scale.

I pledge allegiance to the endless
details of its mass.
The fern frond, verdant with orange specks.
The shrouded salamander.
The fallen, decaying log returning
to the earth beneath my feet.

I pledge to be guardian of my habitat. 

     My sustaining solitude.

     My retreat.

     My inspiration.

I pledge to be guardian of my habitat.

My sustaining solitude.


My retreat.

My inspiration.

I pledge allegiance to the people in this room 

and the potential we represent

for social change,

for justice,

for science in service

for all

“Pledge” by participants of the 2018 March for Science Advocacy Summit, Chicago, Illinois.

Created in writing workshops facilitated
by the Wick Poetry Center

Design by Each + Every

 

Traveling Stanzas community arts projects bring poetry to people’s everyday lives through innovative methods and digital platforms.
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