An Oregon Marcher’s Reflections So Far

[By Judy Todd]

An Oregon Marcher’s Reflections So Far

“New Moon in Gemini, June 2014 – I’m sitting in tonight’s camp: a bunch-grass field on the far eastern edge of New Mexico in the old pueblo city of Costilla.  I have a new appreciation for the early trade routes the indigenous people took west and east. It’s very big country, filled once with the life-giving beauty of abundant water, with unfenced, untilled land, no roads, no contrails, no railroads with thundering coal and oil trains, and no smoking power plants.”

This was written to friends and family at home in Oregon, as I joined the March in April – in Arizona, through New Mexico and into Denver, Colorado. About 500 miles. I wanted to share the impact the March, its ideals, the effect moving on foot or on bicycle for miles every day was having on me. What I witnessed happening in places like NM, from conditions including drought, unmitigated extraction, lack of concern for human health, the disregard of cultural values, the desecration of treaty lands and non-treaty lands, was frightening and profound. The current rush to extract happening all over this country is indefensible in the larger context of wise and careful stewarding, ecological awareness, humane consciousness and the future of all people.

“Not much remains here as before, except the magnificent view of the Sange de Cristo mountain range to the southeast, the looming Rockies to my north & the far western horizon I’ve traveled from Arizona, and into New Mexico.  My heart breaks open every day. At night I welcome the setting sun so I can rest and restore to get up at daylight and begin again.  My traveling companions include others who every day help me keep going as I do them.  My most radical act is to be me.  No holds barred. I fail over and over as my mind simply watches me move across the miles and my body welcomes rest.  Yet, I’m so very blessed to be here, doing this, what I can do. We must stand strong, individually and together, to alter the course of our human impact on Earth. Thank you for your part in stopping the insanity.”

Like many others, Marchers and non-Marchers, I am rearranging my life. I discovered I am fully of the Earth and I am conserving the Earth in every way I can. I am awake and learning, acting, making choices with the future in mind. I am also rearranging my immediate life in order to return to the March and cross the last miles into our nation’s capital in Washington DC. I hope President Obama meets with us and is moved to a new understanding and new actions as a result; that he is changed, as I have been and as we all must be.

Offered by Marcher Judy Todd, Oregon

August 7, 2014