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PIMA BULLETIN NO 49

Part two: A pluriverse of personal stories

Listening to the Rain: The Truth of Land Speaks

Serap Asar Brown

“Wake up! Listen!” says the rain 

coming down in the midst of a dark night

with gloomy weather and strong presence of a rain cloud 

hitting on the roof

following the window in a rush 

to meet the ground

 

I sit in silence

soaked in the stories of rain

born from the land 

I hear clean rivers 

running through the old growth forests

welcoming salmon 

swimming back home to lay her eggs

bears catching fish 

carrying rich nutrition back to the land

wolves howling on giant rocks 

once territories of an Indigenous Band

eagles flying and calling for life

as salmon come back home in unity 

 

the rain brings me a message 

from the members of that community:

“give life a chance, keep us alive so that we can sustain life on earth” 

they all look at me, 

standing upright, with the ancient green forest behind

I gently hold the images and sound

gifted by the rain on this very dark night

 

why do I feel so much grief

down at the deepest part of my heart?

is it because of the sentence given to the old forests: 

“To be liquified!”

says the judge, allowing machines and men with gear on site

my heart starts pounding, 

I must tell another story from the other side

 

colonization targets the land and water 

that hold minerals and mines

“humans? no problem, they need development and look uncivilized”

in order to access the land, introduce trade 

let locals buy and sell

then educate their children 

erase the practices

voices and traditions

once introduce hegemony

call it ‘civilization’, bring new norms 

norms devaluing the land

air and water for the sake of gold

“how much is it worth anyways, to bring water through the pipes?” 

real estate values “view” 

to increase the price of land of many types

 

learning to resist is necessary 

for truth to be held and revealed 

knowledge needs to be decolonized

bringing light as a new method  

“Listen deeply”, says the rain 

“and wash away what has accumulated”

my eyes become wide awake 

to distinguish truth from what has been stated 

 

I look right into the eyes of the members of the Land and Water Community 

I stand up, promise to resist, find a way to keep life on earth alive in unity 

November 21, 2018

 

About the author 


Serap Asar Brown (D.M.D., B.A., M.Sc.) is a Ph.D. student in Adult Education and Leadership Studies at University of Victoria, Canada. She is a Water lover, arts-based adult educator and researcher, poet, filmmaker, and a long-distance bicyclist along rivers from source to sea. Serap believes in the power of stories and finds ways to bring values-based approach to our relations to Water.  Her research focuses on remembering, reimagining, and re-storying relations to Water, referring to Indigenous methodologies and arts-based methods.

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