Sunday, August 15, 2010

The BP Oil Spill Never Happened

The BP Oil Spill Never Happened

Was there an oil spill, around Earth Day this year? Oh, I hadn’t noticed. Actually, I think it never happened. I think we are all sitting around a fire in the woods, entranced by the choreography of flames, and consequently we had a collective vision of being raped and dismembered. The oil spill and its related disasters are all metaphors for human brutality, I suppose.

Was there really an oil spill? Or did my water break and did I give birth to a dead baby? She felt like a giant, bloody, ice cube sliding out of my body who melted away into clumpy ravines as she sobbed down my thighs. Oh right, that never happened, either. The oil spill and the still birth were both nightmares. I must have been under a lot of stress that week.

No. No. It’s true.

We’ve almost shot Mother dead and I’m not sure she will recover. The oil spill did happen, despite my denial.

When I have braved peeking at photos of oil-soaked animals, dead and alive, I sob. What have we done?

What have we done?

What have we done?

What have we done?

I can’t handle this. I feel like I am holding Mother’s hand as she struggles to

Photo Credit: Deep Water Horizon Response

breathe, her lungs pop up like little bursting buttons. I feel like my heart is about to shoot out of my chest like a flurry of F-sharps from a tenor sax as terror engulfs me because a man is about to force himself into me. I feel like I am choking on my own vomit as I wake up from a season of drunken avoidance. I can’t handle this. I can’t handle this.

Sea turtles were burned alive.

About 50 per cent of our bodies is water; cells and billions of subatomic particles swim within us, just like sea life swim in Mother’s oceans. What if your heart were burned alive like the sea turtles? What if someone pried open our mouths to pour millions of gallons of gasoline inside, causing us to suffocate from the evil batter that pushes us down like cinder blocks to the bottom of the Gulf?

Most of us are sorry, I believe — sorry that we have been so terrible to Mother, been so terrible to each other. Mother will live on after we are gone, but we cannot live without her, needless to say.

Photo Credit: The Sierra Club

There are several things that we can do in response to the spill. I cry over spilled cow’s milk and Mother’s milk (oil). I think crying is important. I cry real tears and through paintings, songs, and other art forms. This is how I express myself the best. But it’s not only self-indulgent and self-soothing. The arts are a form of communication to the masses and communication creates awareness and helps others get in touch with their feelings. This is why my arts group, the Tryst Collective, is hosting a one-night event next month (date TBD) about the NYC’s creative community’s response to the spill. Please see the Call for Entries and Musicians for more information if you are interested in participating or attending.

I also encourage getting directly involved with oil spill cleanup. There are a variety of things that we each can do, including donating and advocacy work. Here are two helpful links, both chock full of information:

(c) Jessica Rowshandel, 2010


Jessica said...

Thanks so much for reposting. What an interesting blog u have! How did you get connected to mine?

OnlyEd said...

You are most welcome. I was doing my daily search for new things to learn, I was looking for environmental stuff specifically, when I spotted the title of your piece . . . it intrigued me so i went over to see . . . and I was struck by the depth of your writing -- a haunting poetry of stark emotion relating in the only way one can to such a terrible tragedy that most people do not even care about. oh, on the surface, if you ask them, they'll say how tragic it was . . . "was" being the operative word for them . . . but their emotion is feigned. Not yours. Your emotion is real. It stopped me cold. I am grateful to have read your work, and look forward to more. Thank you.