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A poem I wrote in the spring of 2018… The inspiration being the news about what is happening to our ocean life and my innate knowledge that all life has and all lives have a song.

* * * * *

Is there singing in the sea?
The sound of the waves is a lullaby
to me reclining on the sand of the shore.
“Shhh-ahh, shhh-ahh, shhh-ahh”
whisper-sings the ocean mother.
I wonder that the clouds in this bluest sky
set the tempo of these waters
that flow with the earth’s spinning rhythm.

Is there singing in the sea?
Do these waves mask the tunes
of the whales’ poignant aria of loss and death,
telling the anguish of suffocation in
the plastic detritus and metallic poisons of two-legged land creatures?

Is there singing in the sea?
Do the dolphins recit of love
in their joyful darting dances in and out of the waves?
Or of fear and pain when caught in the fisher’s net or
when smothered by the fume of a boat’s exhaust?

Is there singing in the sea?
Do the bleached corals, blanched by the heat of humanity’s hubris,
croak in raspy gasps for air?
Do the anemone yet hum a swirly melody of the flow of life and death
as they gently entrap their tiny prey?

Is there singing in the sea?
Down in the dark, dark depths
where the weight of water and the near absence of light
is belied by the insistent beauty of life in thermal streams,
do strangely formed beings sing a pungent bacterial lay of survival,
a deep booming ostinato of “then, now, and evermore”?

Is there singing in the sea?
I walk along the strand and count my steps to the
ebb and flow,
ebb and flow,
ebb and flow
of ever-moving tides.
Seals, resting on rocks and sandbars,
mouthe a pulsing monophony of moaning tones
as they warm themselves in the sun
while waves lap at them in slow deliberate time.
I sing along with their cantata
“ah-roo, ah-roo, ah-roo”.
I pick up the lone nautilus and hold it to my ear.
I hear a soft soothing breathing.
I ask silently of the shell,
“Is there singing in the sea?”
She replies in a quiet
“phffff, phffff; phffff, phffff”
insisting that as long as there is
sky and cloud
wind and water
seal and sun
rock and amoeba
sand and starfish
shell and crab
storm and wave
fish and fathom
shark and cod
predator and prey
whale and narwhal
signal and echo
dolphin and dance
turtle and current
thermal and geyser
there shall be singing in the sea–

but only if the two-legged land creature
learns to sing along.

A few nights ago, I watched a documentary on the use of DMT (the psychedelic Dimethyltryptamine, which is also found endogenously in our bodies and in all kinds of plant and animal beings) in controlled scientific experiments, during which the volunteers, to a person, reported “out-of-time” experiences, seeing angels, floating through stars, expanded consciousness, etc. I was never a big psychedelic drug taker, but with the use of music, I have had such experiences. I also have a client on the mildly psychotic spectrum who reports something similar in their experience of their schizophrenic hallucinations, and since I sincerely believe that we all carry the imprint of our celestial (as in big bang) origins, I have been given a sense of the profound beauty that we carry within us as a gift from our universal beginnings. This is my poetic response… (starway, gauzey, dearth are NOT mistakes!).

* * *

What is the essence of my soul?
What is that truth that makes me whole?
Am I the stars, the sun, the moon?
Do angels sing along with my tune?

What are the shapes in my consciousness
When I float out of time in weightlessness?
I sing a song of colors in flight
Sailing through space on wings of light.

My heart lives in the rhythm of the universe
A drumbeat of blood rushing in a traverse
On the spiral starway of the galaxies.
I’m high on a glittery gauzey trapeze.

Within my body, each little part
was born a trillion years ago
when the universe exploded at its start.
Flowing through my soul’s synergy
are my ancestors, the stars,
creating my existence of electric energy.

I am the stars, the sun, the moon.
I am the mother of milky ways
within whom is born all love and compassion,
without which is never a transformation.
I am the energy from which all matter is birthed,
I am the light out of which comes wisdom,
I am the sounds of a musical prism,
I am the transcendence of fear, pain, and dearth.
I am the universe.

 

“I draw from the absurd three consequences, which are my revolt, my freedom, and my passion.” “There is no love of life without despair of life.” – Albert Camus

Absurdity

This song was written on August 5th, inspired by the Brain Pickings blog post on Albert Camus’s philosphy about living through despairing times.

I look outside my window and I see the rain
I look outside my window and I see the rain.
But for the rain, there wouldn’t be the flower.
But for the rain, there wouldn’t be the flower.
How absurd! How absurd! How absurd! How absurd!

Chorus:

No love without despair, no mend without a tear.
No freedom without a scar; just passion goes far.

I look across the sky and I see the clouds
I look across the sky and I see the clouds.
But for the clouds, there wouldn’t be the rainbow
But for the clouds, there wouldn’t be the rainbow.
How absurd! How absurd! How absurd! How absurd! Chorus

I look inside my heart and I see the pain.
I look inside my heart and I see the pain.
But for the pain, no joy in a blue sky.
But for the pain, no joy in a blue sky.
How absurd! How absurd! How absurd! How absurd!

In a dream, spoken freely, is the chance.
Beneath an ever-changing sky is the dream in my eye.
I speak a truth, and my dream does a dance.
I sing a truth, and my dream learns to fly.

I look outside my window and I see the rain
I look outside my window and I see the rain.
But for the rain, there wouldn’t be the flower.
But for the rain, there wouldn’t be the flower.
How absurd! How absurd! How absurd! How absurd! Chorus

******

Click here to hear the song: Absurdity on SoundCloud

My new song — Nevertheless, She Persisted, in honor of Senator Elizabeth Warren 

He told her, be quiet.  He told her, sit down.
He told her, don’t riot.  But she stood her ground.
Nevertheless, she persisted.
For she had her morals and she had the right
And she had the laurels to put up a fight.
Nevertheless, she persisted.

Chorus:
Never the less, she went on.
Never the less, she resisted.
Never the less, she moved strong.
Never the less, she persisted.

She spoke for all people who don’t have the power,
Who’ve been put down, and turned round, and been made to cower.
“We won’t shut up, we won’t back down, we won’t give up, and we won’t turn round.
We’ll stand in the hallway and shout the door down.”

You may have your rules but those ways are broken
And she grabbed the tools so the truth could be spoken.
Nevertheless, she persisted.
For she had her morals and she had the right
And she had the laurels to put up a fight.
Nevertheless, she persisted.

Chorus

Hear the song here:

https://soundcloud.com/janhapharp/nevertheless-she-persisted

or here

https://soundcloud.com/janhapharp/nevertheless-she-persisted-with-heartsoulvoice-duo

Determination

Braving the new world,
You feel an unbearable, unnameable fear,
Shaped by gray twists of smoke and red tendrils of fire,
Clouded in your brain’s muted blue mourning,
As if free falling in a bad dream
From which you wake, startled by the flailing of your limbs,
As if pushed off a precipice into dark roiling waters,
Whirlpooling into a deep abyss.

But you say to yourself,
I have been here before;
I have awoken the next morning,
A survivor of the bad dream.

And I have put on my shoes,
Tied the laces with determination,
Walked with boldness out into the street
In the glaring light of day, exposed,
But refusing to be vanquished
In vulnerability.

For nothing is ever made manifest without risk.

And you say to yourself:
I have a mouth which has a voice which has a heart which has a soul
Which has a passion which has a mind which has a hand which has a grasp
Which finds a pen which writes the words or makes the marks which say:
I shall not be silenced.

And I say to you, let us stand side by side
And clap thunder to the dark clouds of despair
And sing high the chant of true humanity.

I Am A Feminist 

A late night musing on being a feminist in a trumply world. The recording link is below.

I Am A Feminist

Chorus:
I am a feminist,
Yes, I am a feminist,
I am a feminist,
And I belong to me.
You could call me nasty surly,
You could call me freshly tart,
You could call me little girly,
But I just call me smart,
For I am a feminist,
Yes I am a feminist,
I am a feminist,
And I belong to me.

Verse 1
There’s no “post-feminist era
For feminism is “foreva”.
I’m my own human being,
Got my own way of seeing.
My mama always said
You are your own woman.
If you can’t get that
You got another think comin’.

Verse 2
It’s my body, it’s my choice,
And you can’t trump that it’s my call.
Choose the girls, choose the boys,
Or choose nothin’ at all.
And it’s in my genes
To be just what I please.
And what’s in my jeans
belongs only to me for…

www.soundcloud.com/janhapharp/i-am-a-feminist

Dear Friend

I wrote this song for my best friend from high school.  She moved away to the Southwest last fall and for her parting gift I penned this song hurriedly the afternoon before her going-away party.  I sang it that evening and promised I’d record it for her.  I’m finally getting to that part!  You can hear two recordings at the link below.

Dear Friend (for Tina)

Dear friend, though you travel far away
You will always be in my heart.
Dear friend, though your road leads you away,
In my life, you’ll always play a part.

When the days grow chill,
I’ll think of you still,
You in your southern abode.
And perhaps someday,
When my feet need to stray,
I’ll follow you down that road.

Dear friend, though you travel far away
You will always be in my heart.
Dear friend, though your road leads you away,
In my life, you’ll always play a part.

In your heart there is a calm you gave to me in loving touch.
In your heart there is a calm you gave to me in eye’s delight.
In your heart there is a child whose laughter is a youthful ring.
In your heart there is a child whose sweetness I keep in my sight.

Dear friend, though you travel far away
You will always be in my heart.
Dear friend, though your road leads you away,
In my life, you’ll always play a part.