All of Us

All of Us

                                                                                      New Velvet ~ Philip Brent Harris



It is time to put people over politics, country over capitulation and world over wealth.


Sitting quietly in my back yard,
something I do, have done
too rarely, though recently
we have made it nicer,
a better place to  hang out.
Hot, like it shouldn’t be
in northern California,
the San Francisco Bay Area,
the second week of June.
Shouldn’t be, but is and
will continue to be, unless,
everyone, all of us, accept
our part, get serious about
slowing our effect
on climate change
soon enough to matter.

So, sitting, trying to cool down,
because I felt nauseated,
overheated, as my body is
prone to do, lucky me.
A red-headed bird,
not sure what type,
landed on our fence,
hopped down on the other side
of our butterfly bush.
Curious, I waited.
Two LBB’s – little brown birds,
landed closer and ignored me.
A hummingbird flashed in,
hovered by the Mexican Sage,
slipped and shifted,
purple blossom to purple blossom.

Noise in the shrubs
on the hill behind me. Oscar,
the neighbor’s dog, barked,
pulled my eye away, to
my back fence as
a young, black-tailed buck
deer, in new velvet,
bounded up the hill
behind the house, stopped
ten to fifteen feet from me.
We watched each other,
decided our next moves.
I wished I had my
DSLR camera
to hand and not my phone,
still in my pocket.

I looked away,
caught peripheral glances
as I eased my phone
out of my pocket.
I took a moment
to switch to the camera.
I moved it slowly
above the fence,
snapped a picture,
and another,
but our rapport
was broken.
My tenuous friend
bounded away,
first up away,
then down away.

Until, I saw only
the lush, fresh velvet
on his antlers
above the tall grasses,
where the hill first levels
before plunging deeper
into the canyon behind us.
My wife came out.
I told her of my encounter.
She looked and spotted it
entire, as a final tail flick,
heel kick sent from sight.
As I wrote this,
an unnoticed scrub Jay
flew up to my back fence,
on to parts unknown.

I followed its flight and
spotted a container ship
from the other side of the world
sail past the Marin Headlands,
to vanish behind a distant hill
on its way beneath the
the Golden Gate Bridge.
It spans this gilt named
passage into San Francisco bay,
the port of Oakland.
What tariffs have we paid
to witness this, late
on a Sunday afternoon?
Two ravens offer comment.
As wise as they may be,
I confess, I do not understand.


Peace is Purpose, Nonviolence is Strength,  Diversity is Unity, Empathy is Empowerment


Please, leave a comment and let me know what you think.

See more of my creative offerings and opinions at:

Brent Harris Fine Art

Philip Brent Digital Art

Vida Voices

Scriggler TPM

Pacifica, CA 94044

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