A Call To Women of Spirit All over the World


I call on Women of Spirit in every part of the world:

Too often it is the women of the world who watch their loved ones die in bombings and massacres and combat, high-tech, low tech, or no tech.

Too often it is the women who are in the line of fire, the line of retreat, or the path of the victors.


For centuries, women of spirit have been divided by rules and views and politics that declare one method of prayer acceptable and others damnable.


Today I call on every Women of Spirit, however you define yourself, however you pray, however you chant, however you connect to the Divine:

I Pray You, Do This : Connect to the Divine.

Do it for minutes. Do it for hours. Do it alone in a room or a shelter or a cathedral or on a mountain top. Do it in pairs, in thousands, in multitudes.

Connect to the Divine, however you define Divinity.

And Pray for peace.

Or Chant for peace.

Or Dance for peace.

Or Stand for peace.

Or Sit for peace.

Pray for peace in silence. Pray for peace aloud. Gather in boardrooms, bathrooms, basilicas. Pray for Peace with your body in any way it can move. Or dance for peace in utter stillness letting only your lungs breathe and your heart beat.

Pick a time, any time. And pick an interval � a minute, an hour, a day.

And pray for peace at that time for that interval.

Every day.

Every day.

Until this war is ended.

Until War is ended.

Until the wars against women
And all that are born to women
and all that love women
and all that are loved by women
Are ended.

Pick a time. Pick a place. In droves or alone. Aloud or in Silence. For years or centuries or this heartbeat to the next.

Until there is peace.

Until there is compassion.

Until we learn what all our prayers teach us.


It is


©Oriethyia March 19, 2003 as my country begins a war with Iraq

The Fire Next Time

The towers fell.

In God's name, some said.

God wept.

When the ovens gave up their ash
Some thought God had so ordained.

God wept.

At the stake or
In the fields,

Burning brand or napalm.
Whenever fire meets flesh in God's name

Water falls from Holy eyes.

The Fire Next time?

What Time,
is this?

©Oriethyia October 20, 2002

[In the U.S. Oklahoma City bombing,
the yellow rental truck that housed the bomb
exploded at 9:02 am, local time.]


At 9:01
the sun
high and bright and far away
the way such heat and light should be.

9:01 the yellow truck, quiet,
not so loud its voice can blow out windows a block away.
Still, the way a yellow truck at curbside should be still
all its sides standing straight
doors closed, intact, not
blasted to its component parts, not
yellow and black shrapnel, not
loud, not concussive, not
building leveling.
A yellow truck at the curb.

9:01 Most of the children
sit playing, watching,
reach for the red square block or
Thomas the Train
or Eeyore and Pooh.

9:01 Cynthia at her office door
15 more years and she can retire
time with Allison
who reaches now, down in Day Care,
reaching for the red square block.
time to get her own hands in the earth
planting hydrangea, bougainvillea, begonia, lily
dig her arms deep into the earth, up to the elbow
if she wants.
time to sit with daughter Allison
teach her all about leaf patterns, sewing patterns, dating
time to love the ones she loves
the way she wants to love them
with her full attention,
without this weariness.

9:01 Martin, running late, parks the car behind the yellow truck
runs to the elevator
God, he loves those kids but
Man, they can sure take it outta' you
Chides himself for his frustration
traffic did more damage today than
the kids, really.
Quick stop at the credit union
then he'll race across town
make that meeting
almost in time.
never enough time
time for the children
watching them argue
wishing they would enjoy each other
the way he does each of them
time to be a lover to his wife
to take time together, make time, make
long, slow love
time to try out that new fishing rod
time alone in the stream
just him and the fish and the sound of cool water
over rock.

9:01 Maria types
glad for the job, finally
glad for these people,
she knows so little of their lives
know she is invisible to most
but here is order and blessed quiet
the chaos of home gone
eight hours a day.
Smiling, her fingers race across the keys
now she can save for a place of her own
her fingers move, automatic,
the words on the screen unseen
she conjures pictures
a small apartment
she'll make a studio where the living room
would be
make a room for her art to live
try to coax it back to life
try to repair the damage of
too many lives in too small a space
try to seduce the colors back, the lines,
make room for her to breathe,
for her paints to breathe and her canvases.

9:01 the yellow truck
yellow like the sun it will, in one minute eclipse

9:01 the little hand reaching for Pooh,
yellow in a natty red vest

9:01 walking to the file cabinet in a daylily dream

9:01 save document to C:\unit.docs,
nod hello to Janice who called her new office watercolor "lovely"

9:01 take the money from the account,
make plans to call the travel agent,
make time for a little special family time,
for time alone in that stream

9:01 the yellow truck
is ticking at the curbside.


Hold the little hand in yours.
Pass her Pooh and the shiny red block.


Find that stream and the lilies and your watercolor mornings. Live your life
with love
with art.


The clocks and the sundials make promises they cannot keep.

Bury your watch with the newly interred dead.
Cast your illusions of permanence like
ashes to a strong wind.

No matter where the sun is in your sky,

It's 9:01.

©Oriethyia 26 October, 1995

May All Awaken To Compassion
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