Where in the Appalachian Bioregion are we going?

Where in the Appalachian Bioregion are we going? The consensus was for the White Mountain National Forest (in the Northeast), or the Appalachian states of Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Georgia. Spring Council selected a site in North Eastern Tennessee.

If you're not familiar with the gauntlet on the road into the gathering, and want to avoid a mandatory court appearance ticket click here.

For the Howdy Folks and directions to the gathering, click here. For the United States Forest Service Incident Command website with groovy maps and updates, click here.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Memorial Day, The Gathering and Veterans

Tomorrow is Memorial Day when we take time to honor and remember the men and women who have died in wars.  In 1989, I was in Washington DC for Memorial Day and experienced Rolling Thunder - the annual motorcycle rally that calls for the government's recognition and protection of Prisoners of War (POWs) and those Missing in Action (MIAs).

Feeling the thunder from the motorcycles in my chest was one thing, but the events after still bring tears to my eyes after all these years.  We stood in circle, mostly veterans, a few civilians. The veterans were mostly men. Large gruff men with tattoos and long hair.  We went around and shared a story or two about a loved one who disappeared. Some of the men in the circle I was in had been POWs.  As the circle went around, we cried. Not just me but all of us. We cried for the lives lost, we cried for the pain and suffering, we cried for not knowing what happened to brothers, son or fathers.  Holding hands with a 200 pound six foot man crying for his lost friend is ....  well I don't really have the words to express it.  But it's community. Being with your community, your family has power.

Often times, veterans and soldiers don't think they have a place at a peace and healing gathering.  Well, I'm here to tell you you're wrong.  Please come home, gather on the land, participate in a circle or two, or just chop wood.  While we may not have a lot, we have boundless love, endless pots of beans and rice and plenty of campfires to sit around and share stories. 

Many of the earlies were veterans of the Vietnam War and found love in the community we create and the mediation/prayer for world peace.  Many veterans have found hope in this family over many a year.  We're coming. We're stinky, a bit chaotic but full of love and we want you to come home to the land, to the healing and to the circle on the morning of July 4th.

No comments:

Post a Comment