EBB AND FLOW
The waves rushed in, dashing the beach,
drinking in the sand, gulping thirstily;
drawing in the seaweed, sea-shells and all they could reach.
Then they receded slowly, regrouping reluctantly.
Ebb and flow…
The waves move, relentless
in their strife to grow
and yet, quite mindless!
Seagulls sweep in to examine
the bounty littered on the sand.
They pick, they nibble, they forage the shoreline
before they continue their winged way with wind.
Ebb and flow…
Dawn breaks then the sun sets.
Soon the moon will glow,
time to pull in the nets.
The water ripples and gathers the clan.
Bursting with pride, it crests
oh, so high, according to plan
with medals pinned to its breasts!
Ebb and flow…
Like the waves, time keeps moving:
fast or slow
but never stopping.
Time teases you with a Spring’s morning
and feeds you Summer’s ripening fruit.
Just watch out for the Autumn leaves falling
to herald the Winter of gloom and short daylight!
Ebb and flow…
Life is about change, really!
The winds of change will blow.
Flow with time, like the waves, surely.
As much a part of Nature as the waves,
you exist, you live with each ebb and flow.
Nature creates, it sustains, it saves;
just flow with it, each high and each low.
Ebb and flow…
Don’t fight it, simply float…
(but watch out for the undertow!)
The waves of time will carry you, like a boat.
The meaning of Life is no mystery:
it is to survive, to stay alive!
It’s all been done before; why, it’s written in history!
Live each day, each moment, despite the pain and strife.
Ebb and flow…
Even the highest mountain, friend,
blow by slow blow
will eventually be reduced to sand!
Be like the waves: joyous in creation,
bubbling with action and delight.
Though receding, still in motion,
yet cresting again to catch the sunlight.
Ebb and flow…
Run on the beach of your life:
like the waves, grow
and into the waters of life, dive!
Ebb and flow.
“For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more I revere them when they stand alone. They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche. In their highest boughs the world rustles, their roots rest in infinity; but they do not lose themselves there, they struggle with all the force of their lives for one thing only: to fulfil themselves according to their own laws, to build up their own form, to represent themselves. Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree. When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured. And every young farmboy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.
Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.
A tree says: A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. The attempt and the risk that the eternal mother took with me is unique, unique the form and veins of my skin, unique the smallest play of leaves in my branches and the smallest scar on my bark. I was made to form and reveal the eternal in my smallest special detail.
A tree says: My strength is trust. I know nothing about my fathers, I know nothing about the thousand children that every year spring out of me. I live out the secret of my seed to the very end, and I care for nothing else. I trust that God is in me. I trust that my labor is holy. Out of this trust I live.
When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy, life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. Let God speak within you, and your thoughts will grow silent. You are anxious because your path leads away from mother and home. But every step and every day lead you back again to the mother. Home is neither here nor there. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.
A longing to wander tears my heart when I hear trees rustling in the wind at evening. If one listens to them silently for a long time, this longing reveals its kernel, its meaning. It is not so much a matter of escaping from one’s suffering, though it may seem to be so. It is a longing for home, for a memory of the mother, for new metaphors for life. It leads home. Every path leads homeward, every step is birth, every step is death, every grave is mother.
So the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts: Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.”
― Hermann Hesse, Bäume. Betrachtungen und Gedichte
Fin whales are magical giants of the sea. But in days, over 180 of these endangered species are set to be slaughtered by one tycoon and his buddies whose summer hobby is to harpoon them, chop them up and ship their meat through the Netherlands to Japan for dog food!
There is one way to stop the hunt before it starts — you can’t dock a boat full of illegal whale carcasses just anywhere. German and Finnish authorities have shunned the shameful trade. Now, the Dutch are the linchpin. They care deeply about their reputation as environmental leaders, and are hoping this bloody trade won’t get any global attention. But if we expose it now and demand the Dutch authorities refuse the transfer of whale meat in their port, we can stop the whale massacre!
We have to act fast — the whaling ships are due to start the hunt in days. Sign now and tell everyone to join — let’s build a one million strong campaign to Prime Minister Mark Rutte now warning him that we will create a media storm with giant whales on his doorstep unless he stops the transfer in Dutch docks:
These majestic creatures are the second largest animal on earth, they can grow to be as long as three buses and move through water like lightning. Their incredible combination of sleek, elegant power and speed earned them the nickname “greyhound of the sea”.
Tragically, whalers like Kristjan Loftsson have slaughtered hundreds of thousands and over 70% of the global population was wiped out. But since the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and the International Whaling Commission bans were instated, their population has significantly increased. We could help them back from the brink if we can stop them being butchered for dog food!
Getting the Dutch to refuse Loftsson’s bloody cargo in Rotterdam is the best way to stop the hunt before it starts as it will set a precedent for other European ports. So far the Dutch have allowed him to get away with this mass murder. Let’s expose them now and put an end to this slaughter. Sign the petition and tell everyone — let’s stop the trade before the first harpoon is fired:
Avaaz members have achieved tremendous things for biodiversity, from opposing the ivory trade to winning a ban on pesticides that were killing record numbers of bees. In 2010, Avaaz members were central to keeping the international moratorium on commercial whaling intact — now let’s stop this horrific hunt and keep marching toward a more humane world.
Pascal, Lisa, Oliver, Alice, Ricken, Allison, David, Alaphia and the whole Avaaz team
PS – Many Avaaz campaigns are started by members of our community! Start yours now and win on any issue – local, national or global: http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/start_a_petition/?bgMYedb&v=25182
Iceland is killing fin whales for Japanese pet treats (EIA)
Iceland to resume disputed fin whale hunt in June (Yahoo News)
For Iceland’s whale king it’s “just another fish” (AFP)
Ceaseless Pressure on Whales (NYT)
Iceland’s creation of an endangered species trade (Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society)
‘Indigenous footballer, Adam Goodes says that racism in Australia was given a face and a name this week. And that face was a 13-year-old girl.
The teenage Collingwood fan was at the MCG on Friday evening, watching her beloved Pies lose to the Sydney Swans. The match was part of the annual Indigenous round, through which the AFL acknowledges the amazing contribution that Aboriginal players make to the game.
13-year-old, Jessica*, frustrated and angry at her team’s poor play, yelled out at Adam Goodes, calling him an ‘ape’. Goodes turned around, visibly shocked and upset at this racially charged abuse, and watched as the girl was ejected from the stadium by security.’
Of all the coal terminals planned for the Great Barrier Reef, Terminal Zero shows just how much contempt coal mining corporations have for Australia’s most precious natural icon.
Right now Indian mining giant Adani is trying to build this monster coal shipping terminal right in the middle of a World Heritage Area. The surrounding area is full of fish and supports a sustainable local fishery. The site is just metres from a beach where for decades sea turtles have come to lay their eggs. We have an opportunity now to stop this terminal being built, but only if we act fast.
Until Tuesday, the federal government is taking public submissions on Terminal Zero. So let’s flood our politicians with thousands of emails right away telling them Australians don’t want Adani’s dirty coal terminal on our Great Barrier Reef.
The amount of infrastructure required for this terminal beggars belief. Destructive dredging ships would scrape three million cubic metres of sediment from the ocean floor, along with the seagrass that dugongs and turtles rely on for food. The leftover dredge spoil would then be dumped inside the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.
Hundreds of extra coal ships would travel through a narrow passage to export the coal, greatly increasing the risk of collisions and spillages. Once the coal is burnt, it’ll drive global warming faster than ever before. It’s another monster coal plan with monstrous consequences.
Local fishermen say this development will push fish out of the area, spelling disaster for the fishing industry. As one Bowen fisherman told reporters last week: “It’ll mean a 30% loss of income because of the potential effects on fish stocks.” . They don’t want to see a repeat of what happened to the fishing industry in Gladstone, and neither do we. Making your submission is the first step to getting our government to take action and uphold its promise to protect the Reef.
The mining industry thinks it can get away with reckless developments like this without proper scrutiny. But I’ll say this now: we won’t let them out of our sight as long as they continue to put the Reef, marine life and Australians in danger.
We’re taking our new Rainbow Warrior ship to Bowen soon to shine a spotlight on the campaign to stop this coal terminal. Send your message today and show the communities of Bowen and Abbot Point you stand with them.
Dr Georgina Woods
Climate and energy campaigner
Greenpeace Australia Pacific
PS. Environment Minister Tony Burke is on record saying he won’t approve any new coal developments that cause “unacceptable damage” to the Reef.  There is nothing “acceptable” about the damage Terminal Zero would cause. Click here to send your message and hold him to his word.