Friday, 31 January 2014

permaculture dreamin'

Eat food?  Then you need to watch this.

I mean it.  No pleas or petitions cloaked in pretty turns of phrase, just fact.  You need to watch this.

Permaculture calls itself a quiet revolution.  A revolution of actors too enthused to wait for government support or mass movements before they act.  A revolution that believes small changes lead to big.  A revolution of idealists bent on saving the world, and of realists who understand that their role in salvation begins within their immediate spheres of influence.  It's quiet because it's led by people at home, not corporations, politicians or pedagogues.

But I think it's time to get louder - starting with me.

My love and I have a dream, and our dream is this:  a small permaculture farm buried in the wilds of the Northwest.  Some ducks, some goats, maybe a horse or two.  A bevy of rescued hounds, to be sure.  Just living off the land, as the land wants to live.  We'll grow our food and make our music and learn to weave environments and textiles that we'll grow ourselves.  We'll continue to travel and learn and wander and wonder, for these things are in the blood and cannot be denied.  But we'll do them while living our dream.  Our farm.  Our home.

“The world needs dreamers and the world needs doers. But above all, the world needs dreamers who do.” – Sarah Breathnach

Designing the land courts neither riches nor fame.  It feeds you.  To paraphrase climate expert Bill McGibbon, the one shared asset that farmers around the world have always possessed is the assurance that they can grow their crops on the same land as their mothers and fathers.  The freedom of permanence in an impermanent world.  That assurance is eroding, just as the land erodes and withers from our current growing systems, counterintuitive to mother nature's design.  Systems that make it impossible for her to protect herself.  Systems reliant on one of her most finite resources.

So my love and I want to listen to nature, work with her, not against.  Land should be a dependable legacy; for centuries it has been so.  But land too has a biological clock tick tick ticking away, and humanity's greatest efforts aren't bent toward researching climate renewal or planetary fountains of youth.  Rather, we naively plunder the very earth that sustains us.  That feeds us.
Without consideration, but with consequence.

But what has begun has far from ended.  Hope and research and resolve and revelations and revolutions are alive and well around the world.  We want to join in.  We want to feed, as do millions of others like us.  Feed ourselves, our souls, our families, our communities, our countries, our planet.  Contact our local prison so that those men and women can spend a day in the sun and take with them all the fresh vegetables they can carry.  Have neighbours come to share wisdom and devise experiments, while we feed them from our yard.  Create safe havens for the birds and the bees, the fields and the trees.  Learn to grow orchards, turf rooftops, embroider linens, reduce possessions, watercolor walls, weave grasses, craft earthships, shape guitars, reconsider waste, tin rutabagas, sculpt adobe, reuse relics, preserve ecosystems.  Preserve us.  We'll make the land into an artefact.

The earth will be our artefact.

- xx

[image via, a great place to drift, dream and drool for hours....]

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