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Month of May Mothers: Big Mama.

Glowing Mother EarthToday’s post is all about Gaia. Mother Earth. Big Mama.

Hey, I’m random. Deal with it. Mother Earth should probably have been first. “Hey, mom, I know I should have called. Yeah. Sorry about that. Can I borrow a twenty? Will you wash my shirt for me?”

But though we walk all over her, make a big mess in her kitchen, and don’t pick up our toys, she always loves us. But she does have her moods. And who can blame her?

Right now, the oil that’s gushing into the Gulf of Mexico is slated to be one of the worst man-made disasters of all time: http://abcnews.go.com/WN/Eco/bp-oil-spill-national-significance-obama-administration/story?id=10509844

It’s funny and cute when Bart Simpson, infamous scamp and momma’s boy, consistently and creatively leaves a wake of destruction wherever he goes, and his mother dutifully cleans up after him. It’s not cute when we humans keep having the same discussion time and again about our dependence on fossil fuels, and then shake our heads when we are sent to the store to buy Dawn dish-washing soap to clean up the wildlife after major oil spills.

Oil and water don’t mix. Everyone knows this.

And yet, we need to use our country’s natural resources to their full extent (don’t we?).

Yesterday, on KUOW, there was a gentleman from the University of Delaware (GO BLUE HENS!) who was speaking about a rational solution for wind farming. The problem, it seems, with wind farming is when there’s no wind, there’s no power. He proposed a sharing of power among the coast lines and wind farm lines. Makes sense.

Which is probably why it won’t happen.

Because we, Mother Earth’s children, have a lot of sibling rivalry. There are the rich, bully¬†brothers, who are tired of lending you money at 30% interest plus your Jello pudding cup, and will give you two for flinching. There are the bum uncles, who mooch at every family gathering. And don’t forget the snotty big sisters, who know it all, and are shrill and bulimic. But she loves us all.

And as we continue to get it all sorted out, she’s provided us with all the guidance and a steady moral compass: Play nice, kids. And don’t make me pull over this car. (And she will!)

For more information about how science is tryng to save the world, again, thank you very much, go to this link:

http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2010/04/08/Grid-proposed-for-offshore-wind-turbines/UPI-95871270740262/

Postscript: Before there was the “Father” most cultures had a mother to worship. Belief structures change, but one thing that doesn’t – this is our only little rock of air, soil, water, and fire. Take it easy, will ya?

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Month of May Mothers: Pocahontas’ son

pocahontas_engravedThe inspiration for this month’s theme of mothers isn’t solely about the month of May and Mother’s Day, but I have no shame in riding on May’s petticoat hem. The inspiration came from watching the first episode of America: The Story of Us from the History Channel. I noticed the absence of women mentioned in the account. Now, we all know not everyone can get a shout-out from the stage of history; there are time limits to retelling the story as there are time limits in the history in the making itself. So, in our retelling of history, there’s a lot of editing.

What does it mean to be a mother? The myth of “stay at home” mothers has always kind of bothered me. I was a “stay at home” mom for awhile, meaning, I didn’t work for a salaried job, inside or outside of my home. I freelanced a bit, and certainly worked hard to take of my small children, but that gig didn’t last as long as I would have liked. And, not all women are “moms” to children born from their bodies. I’m going to take this month to explore all kinds of mothers – real, historical, infamous, famous, ordinary, personified, and mythic. I want to explore these roles, and see where it takes me. And I’m the editor this time.

One early American history mom is Pocahontas. What promise of her union with the Englishman John Rolfe – an “interracial” marriage which would have been considered verboten in many societies, now and previously. The promise was not realized. Though they had one son, Thomas, who went on to live a gentleman’s life, the Native and Western cultures did not solve their conflicts based on one union of husband and wife.

Pocahontas is in my top-twenty historical figures I would love to interview. What do you think she would have imagined happening to our country? What would she have wished for?

Heritage of Pocahontas:

The death of Pocahontas and the subsequent death of her father led to deteriorating relations between the colonists and the natives.

Thomas, son of Pocahontas and John Rolfe, stayed in England when his father returned to Virginia, first in the care of Sir Lewis Stuckley and then John’s younger brother Henry. John Rolfe died in 1622 (we don’t know under what conditions) and Thomas returned to Virginia in 1635 at twenty. He was left the plantation of his father, and also thousands of acres left him by his grandfather, Powhatan. Thomas Rolfe apparently met once in 1641 with his uncle Opechancanough, upon petition to the Virginia governor. Thomas Rolfe married a Virginia wife, Jane Poythress, and became a tobacco planter, living as an Englishman.

Pocahontas’ many well-connected descendents through Thomas include Edith Wilson, wife of President Woodrow Wilson, and Thomas Mann Randolph, jr., husband of Martha Washington Jefferson who was the daughter of Thomas Jefferson and his wife Martha Wayles Skelton Jefferson.

For information and references:

http://womenshistory.about.com/od/pocahontas/p/pocahontas.htm

http://www.preservationvirginia.org/rediscovery/page.php?page_id=26

http://www.virtualjamestown.org/Pocahontas.html