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Reflections on and of the land...

Today’s blog post comes to you a little more creatively than other posts. I have spent this last week with my students, listening to their land explorations. I have asked them this term to be on the land as a practice. Connect with the land as a practice. Feel the land, understand the land and what has been done to this land in order for us to be here, live here, and settle here.

This work has profoundly shifted my students and the narrative that they have been told and know about this land. This work has given my students the opportunity to reflect and connect to land that has been violently destroyed in order for our houses to be built upon and how the man made “greenspaces” made for humans not wildlife has changed their personal story of understanding this land. This work was critical within the moment we are in with mother nature showing us that we are not the ones in control here. Their connections have been powerful and it has brought me in to deep reflection on how we educate about being connected to the land we are on. I don’t believe that I was ever taught this in school and I believe in this moment it is critical for the next generation to know this, so that they will have the tools in understanding how take care of this place.

So, my reflections have come in way of a poem as I reflect on the land where I live with my family.

Who has been displaced?

This land before settlement was covered in old growth forests of cedar and redwood trees. Marsh land and ponds. Thriving, connecting, and supporting life that lived all around them.

Who has been displaced for me to be here?

The Indigenous people of this land were violently removed off of this land, relocated in order for settlers to take all they could see. Killed off by smallpox and other western diseases.

They have been displaced for me to be here…

Redwood trees that were hundreds of years old were seen as money at times and weeds at other times. They were drilled with holes and set on fire, burning from the inside out in order for them to be torn down and removed from their home. They were removed for money and space for agriculture.

They have been displaced for me to be here…

Bears, Beavers, deer, birds, flora and so much more used to live here in abundance. They use to grow and thrive in this area before settlement. They all were interconnected and depended upon each other to live here on this land.

They have been displaced for me to be here…

The commodification of the trees and this land, I am now a part of, I benefit from the colonization of this land.

I benefit from a land that was violently taken without consent. People have been displaced, animals have been displaced, trees have been violently removed and trunks have been blown up in order for me to live here today.

The original care takers of this land are still in this moment fighting for their land back, fighting for the rights to take care of this land like they have for thousands of years before settlers came. This has all happened and continues to happen on this land where I live today.

They have all been displaced for me to be here… and I benefit from this, while the land, the animals and Indigenous people still suffer...

I continue to perpetuate settler colonialism by living on these lands…

How do I reconcile this?


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