EarthWorms Castings

With Jean Ponzi

Be Here Now
A New Year’s Time-Life Travelogue

December fades, the season turns,
I hatch my New Year’s plot
And catch myself attaching
To a wish for what I’m not.

Don’t get me wrong, I love it here
Upon this sweet, exquisite planet.
The hitch is human nature:
I would sometimes like to can it.

Drifting into reverie,
Deliciously recalling
A long-past life in lush surrounds . . .
I see myself in jungles sprawling

A languid incarnation ‘twas!
My purpose? Just to eat and wallow,
And some days whack a predator . . .
My Hippo Life: hard act to follow.

Oh yes, I’ve been around the block,
Through lives experiential
A rider on the Karmic rails
An Earth-bound soul who stays, consent-tial.

Perhaps a Bodhisattva
I may yet evolve to be,
But just now I’m remembering
How swell was dwelling as a Tree!

To stand with fellow beings
In a vast, communal woods
To thrive in Zero-Waste exchange
Of all life’s necessary goods

And even in Methuselan age
When rot and worms and fungal forms
Were feasting on my life-force
I remained at one with Nature’s norms.

Some days, in looking forward,
Forming future purpose for myself,
I’d like to blow this human pop-stand,
To skip a human grade and be – an Elf!

To master Elvish magic,
(Surely kin to Nature’s own)
And dance between dimensions
In an eco-twilight zone

To set my watch by seasons
And have all my work be play
And cool my heels on toadstools
In the starlight of each sun-powered day

As an Elf I could converse with
Every living thing, with fluent grace,
And maybe in the winters
Get a part-time gig at Santa’s place!

Oh! Where was I?
Resolute-ing, as another New Year hails.
In this moment, must be present.
Other-being notion pales.

My human life: a gift, a challenge
Of exchanges fraught and free,
In my covenant, this time around:
To be my best – as Me.

Jean Ponzi shuffles (and tap-dances) through this mortal coil on a Green Path, by night on the KDHX enviro-talk show “Earthworms” (Mondays 7-8 p.m.) and by day at Missouri Botanical Garden’s EarthWays Center. Tap into her resources at www.kdhx.org/earthworms and www.mobot.org/sustainability.