I want to tell you the story of my love for Rivers.
I am not a river girl by nature. My awa (Te Reo Maori for river - Maori name the river and the mountain that is connected to them as part of their mihi when they are introducing themselves, which roots them very cleanly to a specific part of this land) is Hatea.
But lately i have become heart sore about the state of our rivers here in New Zealand. Many of the rivers around my home town are unfit for humans to swim in. Let alone fish, kura, birds, eels. I feel immense shame about this and part of me is looking over my shoulder should the NZ tourist board momentarily break down the door. But it is the truth.
I do what i can, live clean, pick up rubbish where i find it.
But i want to do more and was feeling stuck until one day i got this song gifted to me by Spirit. I will say that out loud because i am not a singer. I have huge voice issues. Down to having one paralysed vocal chord and having been told not to sing shout or use my voice loudly in order to protect the remaining one.... fat chance... but claiming a song and singing it out loud is not something i ever thought i would do... and yet...
And i began to sing it as i walked by the river, as i drove over the river....
I love the simplicity of this offering. Ever since i read Dr Emoto's book i have been really moved when i think about the spirit of the water receiving our thoughts and music and words. My amazing accupuncture guy, Bob, taught me how to bless water before i drink it and the difference in blessed and non blessed water is palpable.... This blessing song offers the River my intention and love... I can do it in many ways, in my head, as a hum or really belt it out and be in deep trust that it connects with the spirit of the water.
So i kept singing, like a greeting to water. Like a bowing to the life of the river. And i started noticing where rivers came close to the road, where they had always been present and i had never noticed them. Streams, creeks, all of it connected to the water that bathes us and nurtures us. It was like it was calling back. So I kept singing out.
Then i read about Michelle Gardella a woman's photographic work focusing on Rivers and women. I got brave and sent her my song. (oh, she didn't reply but it seemed like my being brave enough to share it started a wave) I told some friends about my song. And saw that my song touched people.
Then I read about a painter i admire, Deborah Milton, in Washington. Her blog post talks about her prayer to salmon as a practice. I felt an immediate kinship with her offering and mine. When we spoke about it we both saw the synchronicities of what we are doing. Of how we are sending loving energy into the world focusing on the lifeblood of our planet, the beautiful mother water. Of how there is great power in this kind of prayer and how we are feeling called to step up and do this work now. Urgently.
We have decided to build on this together. We thought that by synchronizing our offerings we might get some synergy going, have a bigger impact with a joined intention....
Today was the first day we could combine practice (Saturday- full moon day) and i chose the river at Oakura that runs into the sea. It really is a tiny stream that comes down from the hills where there is forestry and farming. Not clean from filtering native forest but grubby. Dirty. Often walked in by cows. It has been the home of big long finned eels in the past but our eels are suffering and i have not seen any there in the last few years.
So I sat down on our little jetty and offered up prayer for the water, my little song and finally a heart shaped stone i had found on the beach as an offering of ongoing love. I sat with my eyes closed and thought about Deborah and the salmon and how we are building something of beauty.
And i looked down and there in the water was something i had never seen before. Tiny eels. 1 inch long. Our equivalent of salmon - migratory, strong, they leave the water and slither across the land to get to more water, breed in the deepest oceans and return to the streams where they spawned. Like Deborah's salmon.
There they were right there like a little benediction. A little yes i hear you and i am grateful and this work is connected through time and space to all those who are doing the same.
A heartfelt song and a wish for a healthy world. Would you like to join us?
leave me a message and i will send you the details of the offering Deborah and i are dreaming up
Welcome to this world of mine... where i sing to water, see eels and feel grateful for people who open their heart to possibility.