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Life in the Empire


Nothing heavy here. Just a sweet little parable about bunnies... and left-gatekeeper websites.

There was once a warren of rabbits. Most of them were content with being rabbits. For one thing, they had no choice. Furthermore, they realized they had certain talents that enabled them to thrive as rabbits. This they were told by their own spirit long ago:

All the world will be your enemy, Prince of a Thousand enemies. And when they catch you, they will kill you. But first they must catch you; digger, listener, runner, Prince with the swift warning. Be cunning, and full of tricks, and your people will never be destroyed.

There was one rabbit named Rumkowski who was not satisfied with being a rabbit. “The Jackals think we are weak,” he said, “we are tough. The Jackals think we dig holes. Let us build towers. That is progress. We are progressive.” The children in the warren were confused.

“We dig, we listen, we run,” they said. “We are cunning and full of tricks,” they said.

“Ah, but so are the Jackals," said Rumkowski. “So I have negotiated with them. We do not listen, we speak. We do not dig, we build towers. That is progress. We are tough and progressive.”

“We have told our children differently,” said the others. “Have we not all an equal say in the warren? Is not the warren bottom-up, where we dig, run, and listen?”

“The Jackals laugh at us,” said Rumkowski rabbit. “We are tough and progressive. This is a decision that the warren senior team has struggled with at length. We believe it is the right thing to do to move the warren in the direction we want it to go-- towards continuing to be a trusted, respected animal community where progressive ideas and visions are explored in a respectful tough minded way, and where progressive ideas reach all animal leaders, so our babies not only get their ideas out, but also reach, influence and make a difference. "

The Jackals demanded to see the babies who insisted on digging, running and listening. At this point, Rumkowski should have examined his soul… but at this point. Rumkowski rabbit HAD no soul. Instead, Rumkowski rabbit issued an edict throughout the warren: “I must stretch out my hands and beg: Brothers and sisters! Hand them over to me! Fathers and mothers: Give me your children!”

Today, the warren is gone. The rabbits are gone… and the Jackals are gone as well. Today, where the warren used to be, it is now a parking lot. Today, there is nothing to park on the wide stretch of cracking asphalt so poisoned by toxins and self-interest, even weeds will not grow through the cracks in the multi-acre petrochemical slab. At least a few birds make nests in the shell that was once a big-box “store.” But the field where there were once animals and creatures great and small is barren.

Nothing grows there at all.

Views: 24

Comment by pan on May 29, 2009 at 3:02pm
Not offensive, except for those who could take offense.

I wrote some text for a performance at the dedication ceremony for a sculpture in Old Town Pocatello "the gateway to the Northwest"

Gate City. Who guards the gate – those towering pillars of society? Knock on the door, The gatekeeper appears. “It is just me Dorothy and Toto” I’ve brought along a strawman in case you want to argue politics. The Yellow Brick Road sure ain’t been paved with gold. Which way to the Emerald City? North on I-5 if you are escaping the raisin fields of Fresno, I heard it through the grapevine, those grapes taste of wrath cuz you haven’t got the Do-Re-Mi and can’t afford a Napa Chard. Northwest through the Gate. North by Northwest. Look out for crop dusters when you are running through corn fields. Gotta stop runnin’ Settle down on the good side of the tracks. Become a Pillar. Guard the gate. Hold the key. Knock, Knock.

When I put it on the stoods with movement I realized that the gatekeepers wouldn't be too pleased so I did a different one (still performed "Gate City" - just in a slightly different venue). At first I felt like I had self-censored/sold-out but afterwards, when the sculptor cried during the performance, I realized that sometimes it is OK to pick and choose when and where I make certain statements.
Comment by waldopaper on May 29, 2009 at 3:49pm
pan- ya musta done something right. could you put up the text that got to the sculptor? grapes of wrath. do-re-mi. we all gonna be there soon enough. Hannah still hasn't given the green light to meeting up at her house. or maybe i missed it. me peepers is starting to go flat now. now i'm startin to get worried about Curt.

hope he dint do nothin dum on that mudder-skookle o his.
Comment by pan on May 30, 2009 at 7:24am
The sculpture is a sundial in two halves on either side of a sidewalk. I collected a bunch of quotes about time made by various famous folks and randomly gave each of the ten students two quotes, they then created movement that related to the quotes which they repeated throughout the performance while walking clockwise in a circle. The piece worked really well with the sculpture - not so well by itself.

Yesterday I was feeling a little cocky on the local mountain bike trails, not using my brakes, picking up speed on the downhill. Hit a big rock and went airborne over my handlebars. Landed on my left shoulder and hip leaving some bruises and road rash.....and a little more respect for the risks inherent in bicycling. Up till then I was feeling "one" with my bike and the trail - having a great ride - with no clue that I wasn't being safe.

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