Remember by Joy Harjo
from She Had Some Horses
Remember the sky that you were born under,
know each of the star’s stories.
Remember the moon, know who she is.
Remember the sun’s birth at dawn, that is the
strongest point of time. Remember sundown
and the giving away to night.
Remember your birth, how your mother struggled
to give you form and breath. You are evidence of
her life, and her mother’s, and hers.
Remember your father. He is your life, also.
Remember the earth whose skin you are:
red earth, black earth, yellow earth, white earth
brown earth, we are earth.
Remember the plants, trees, animal life who all have their
tribes, their families, their histories, too. Talk to them,
listen to them. They are alive poems.
Remember the wind. Remember her voice. She knows the
origin of this universe.
Remember you are all people and all people
Remember you are this universe and this
universe is you.
Remember all is in motion, is growing, is you.
Remember language comes from this.
Remember the dance language is, that life is.
yes, yes, yes
The sky holds our precious nourishment—air that is inspiration.
The moon recently made her mysterious beauty known with the lunar eclipse on January 20th.
The sun accompanies us every day, rebirthing our world—you might try greeting her in the morning and saying farewell at night.
Your mother and father, regardless of all they did and did not do, created you and brought you into this amazing, interconnected, and life-giving planet earth.
the earth. the earth. the earth.
This whole poem is about the earth.
What is your relationship with the skin that you are?
The plants, trees, and animals that live with us and give us life.
Have you talked with them recently?
The elements—earth, wind, fire, water—all the elements within you, creating you, living you.
How are you guided by them, birthed by them?
“The ageless intercourse between the body and the earth—
this co-evolution—has shaped the tissues and organs
of our very earthly organism…”
~ David Abrams in Becoming Animal, p. 73
In our human-animal nature–
We are alive poems.
We are alive patterns.
We are alive eairth* in human form.
How are you living this great poem?
* “eairth” = the earth and air, the atmosphere of earth, all in one. (Becoming Animal, p. 101)