Friday, July 1, 2011

Islands and Protected Areas of the Gulf of California: Woke up in Oregon ~ Why do I love thee so?

Woke up in Oregon ~ Why do I love thee so?

Woke up in Oregon,
with wild flowers all around,
fragrant, an old orchard, too,
and with beautiful, varied trees,
coming from California,
on my way to the Rainbow Gathering
near the town of Cougar,
in southwest Washington state,
in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.

Woke up in Oregon ~ Why do I love thee so?

No rain this morning,
in Calapooya,
but the weather is Oregon -
gray and overcast -
in these southern hills,
where I've camped for the night,
by the side of the road.
Why do I love thee so, Oregon?

Two hummingbirds fly close,
and hover ...
no sugar sweetness here, now -
on they navigate in search of food.

The ethos in Oregon of
softness and caring -
with commerce, and in the laws, too -
comes through time,
from my Reed days.
Why, and how, does California contrast?
Where are the remarkable
histories of Oregon's goodness,
and how to grow California's freedoms, aboundingly?

In Ashland, the food co-op,
in principle,
has grown, and is thriving,
from my People's Food Co-op days,
in Portland, in the first half of the 1980s.
Bicyclists and long-haired men
abound, and curious bubble vehicles, as well.
Unique goods, produced alternatively, fill the shelves.
This food is wholesome & good.
It's nice to linger here,
and I found free internet access
in this co-op, -
with such tasty & healthy food.
Oh, this sourdough French bread was so soft & fresh -
ate a whole loaf down in one sitting.
It's summertime in Ashland,
the weather is good
and the people are out
free on the street,
happy & relaxed
in this small, Oregon city.

Birds arc and swoop low
above the grasses,
and among the Queen Anne's lace,
in the meadow
beyond the gate.
Such skillful, graceful fliers -
playing with time & space,
in flight.

Feeling a little disconnected
and looking for connecting,
I head to Rainbow,
where I learn, as well,
- nearly 40 years after it started in 1972.
Ah, the children of the light,
where people greet each other,
with 'We love you' -
and where there's the cultural freedom
to mean this here now.
It's a festival of hippy
communitas in 2011,
in a forest
in a part of the world
where Rainbow began,
where two tribes, one from the Pacific NW
and one from northern California,
and everybody else under the sun,
came together near Boulder, Colorado,
all these years ago,
as I've heard it told.
I haven't seen any Rainbow vehicles
on the road traveling north so far,
no hippy vans, no colorful freedoms,
no signs of a Rainbow on the road.
A little nervous about going -
hippies can be 'out there' -
what will emerge this year at Rainbow?

Such sweet, moist, fragrant air, ~
are those blackberry blossoms
around that old, beautiful gnarled stump nearby?
The oaks nearby on the golden hill spread,
not psychedelically, but do create such
canopies of comfort and beauty,
their branches spiraling into
into sky.

The dry, bull rush head is close.
No Doug Fir Old Growth forests here,
for this is more Oregon hobbit land,
of beautiful farms and lovely lands.


( - July 1, 2011)

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