Advice

A friend sent me this poem. I could never be so clear about what care is about.

Advice

by Lion Goodman

crow

An ink-black crow yelled at me, saying,
Be responsible for everything: your life, and the lives of others.
The war in Iraq, and children dying of starvation.
Your neighbor’s happiness - and the Amazon rainforest.
Your body’s health, and the community of elders in Tajikistan.
The bacterial network in the soil, and the fungal mat beneath the roots of trees.
The farm workers being slowly poisoned by pesticides, and the wilderness being stripped of its wildness.
I complained loudly that I was not big enough to hold the whole world.
Do not stop there, he cawed.
You are also responsible for galaxies spinning on their axis, and the birth of stars.
Gravity, and the expansion of space.
All beliefs of every species, and the transformation of hydrogen from one form to another.
What then, I beseeched, does it mean to be responsible?
He looked at me from his perch on the branch outside my window,
first with one eye, then the other,
as if contemplating an answer simple enough for me to understand.
Care, he replied.
Care, Care, Care.

(Photo by Elizabeth Weintraub)

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