Posted in Environment, General Interest, Nature, The BeZine


Storyteller Judith Black
Storyteller Judith Black

We’re getting ready to hit the publish button on this month’s issue of  The BeZine in a few hours. The theme this month is Environment/Environmental Justice. Here, our friend Judith Black helps us to warm up with her TED-X video on StoryTelling and Climate Change organized by the storytelling community.

JUDITH BLACK (Storytelling: A Window on to the World
A Mirror into the Heart) is a professional storyteller, story maker, and teacher/coach with an international following. Originally trained at Wheelock College as an early childhood educator, Judith leapt from the classroom to the stage after training at London’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. Ultimately she bound these two passions with storytelling and for thirty-five years has been using story to motivate, humanize, entertain, and teach. She is the winner of many awards in her field.

If you are reading this in an email, you’ll likely need to link through to view the video.

© portrait, Judith Black

Posted in Environment, Nature, Photograph/iPhoneography, Poem/Poetry

Monsters Rose, a poem

IMG_3835Monsters rose from scenes gone by
And things once green lie down and die
While hoary sighs from glaciers stream
Mountains shiver in warming steam
Bays, gulfs and oceans wealth abort
As oil spills spew, smother and thwart
And man leaves earth in sad deface
His husbandry a vast disgrace

“…the care of the earth is our most ancient and most worthy and, after all, our most pleasing responsibility. To cherish what remains of it, and to foster its renewal, is our only legitimate hope.”
Wendell Berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

Note: I generally dislike rhymed poetry and don’t particularly care for this. No idea why it came out this way but it does say what I want it to say. 

© 2016, poem and illustration, Jamie Dedes, All right reserved

Posted in 100 000 Poets for Change, 100TPC, Nature, Poem/Poetry, Wednesday Writing Prompt

the smell of wood, the scorch of fire, a poem … and Your Wednesday Writing Prompt

stumpsthis rough-barked sequoia stump, sitting in majesty
in its coastal home, victim of wildfire, burned down
to its gnarly roots, its nicks, holes and char, eons
of scars, life seemingly cut off, goddess snake alive
inside the concentric circles, the smell of wood and
scorch of fire, at the verge of our infinity, in its truth ~




haunted by the geometry of limbs, the calculus of green,
the algebraic eloquence of a world within a world  ~

So present.

So essential.

So primal.

it sings to itself in the marrow of our bones

– Jamie Dedes


In preparation for The BeZine 100,000 Poets (and Friends) for Change

Saturday, Sept. 24, 2016

Theme: Environment/Environmental Injustice

This poem was originally written in 2014 for Wilderness Week. There were then and are now a number of fires raging in the western United States. Wildfires are a natural occurrence but since the 1980s they’ve been increasing due to human-caused climate change. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists . . .

Wildfires in the western United States have been . . . occurring nearly four times more often, burning more than six times the land area, and lasting almost five times as long (comparisons are between 1970-1986 and 1986-2003) ….. many of the areas that have seen these increases—such as Yosemite National Park and the Northern Rockies—are protected from or relatively unaffected by human land-use and behaviors. This suggests that climate change is a major factor driving the increase in wildfires.” MORE

We tend to look at these fires in terms of the expense incurred fighting them and the cost of lives, homes, habitat, wild life and so forth. However, there’s one consideration we may forget: Nature teaches us, comforts us, feeds us and is the ebb and flow of our spiritual and physical lives. The loss – the environmental injustice – is profound on more than a material level. This is what the smell of wood, the scorch of fire seeks to illustrate. “Nature” is who we are. Nature is us.

Write a poem or creative nonfiction piece on what the natural environment means to you and perhaps the sense of loss you feel as you note plants, animals, insects and wilderness that you’ve seen damaged or destroyed by climate, industry, overpopulation and whatever else has effected the area in which you live.

© 2014, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reservedPhoto credit ~Bay “The Bay Nature Institute, based in Berkeley, California, is dedicated to educating the people of the San Francisco Bay Area about, and celebrating the beauty of, the surrounding natural world. We do so with the aim of inspiring residents to explore and preserve the diverse and unique natural heritage of the region, and of nurturing productive relationships among the many organizations and individuals working towards these same goals.” Read more HERE.

You are invited to join The Bardo Group Beguines at The BeZine blog on Saturday, September 24 for 100,000 Poets (and friends) for Change.  Below is a list of more features to provide you with information. We hope you’ll join us.


Posted in General Interest, Nature, Poem/Poetry, Spirit

the wordless mystery

FullSizeRender-4abundance lifted on the arc of time
then the folding in ~
the circular successions of creation and negation
forever changing, dark and luminous
nature and destiny, coming and passing
ever active, whole, eternally nameless
the wild river, the still mountain
the wordless mystery

© 2016, poem and photograph, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved

Posted in General Interest, Nature

Solitude, wild rain … and the writing itch …

12219406_790683201040275_4547427200115752178_nOh wild, wonderful rain during the night and into the morning, billowing in wind-gusted torrents.

For some time it drenched the walkway, forming puddles under the palms and the birch, and soaking the good brown earth below.  Thank goodness I’m alone here.  Sweet solitude, wild rain, and the writing itch.

“This is the weather the cuckoo likes,
And so do I;
When showers betumble the chestnut spikes,
And nestlings fly”
Thomas Hardy, “The Complete Poems”

© 2015, words and photograph, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved

Posted in Flowers, Flowers, Trees & Gardens, General Interest, Nature, Poem/Poetry

blue echo

California Scrub Jay
California Scrub Jay

Silent, but for cunning corvidae, they
of song, sub-song, caw, click and rattle
On ghostly air currents they levitate
high above the quiet fragrant turf
And all the while the heart spins
on the rose garden’s pulsing colors,
kindling fancy into inspiration

A fabled coalition of migrant birds
arrives to sit a spell, to catch a breath of
white jasmine on a breeze that speaks
the tongue of aleppo, while under the ginko
words are braided into narrative thread,
yarns pulled from earthy green waves
and that blue echo of peace called sky

© 2014, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; Photo credit ~ California Scrub Jay by Samsara under the CC A-SA 2.0 generic; corvidae include crows, ravens, rooks,jackdaws, jays, magpies, treepies, choughs, and nutcrackers.

Posted in General Interest, Nature, Poem/Poetry

old woman, sea

800px-Caribbean_Ocean_view_from_Bodden_Townshe’s as playful as spray
and as prayerful spume

in peace
and in turmoil
drumming the shore
persistent in her
giving and taking
free of any filters
as wild and dangerous
as any old woman
who says what she thinks

© 2015, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; photo, Caribbean Sea view from Bodden Town, Grand Caymen by Lhb1239 under GNU General License 

Posted in Flowers, General Interest, Nature, Photograph/iPhoneography, Poem/Poetry

oppressed by the sun


the heat and humidity
the day oppressed by the sun
the night sky is overcrowded
the pitted moon superfluous

i’d rather be cool
a blue lotus, floating
on a shimmering pond
a soulful thing,
solitary by day, and
in the cool night
eyes relieved of
the unremitting sun

© 2015, poem and photograph, Jamie Dedes, All right reserved