Category Archives: climate

February Promises


Feb 1 rose bud ~d nelson

Yes, another coldest night
followed by another coldest day
felt in delicate, dark, places of fragility
in earth’s life forms, big & small.

Feb 1 blossom

Slowly breathing in this coldness
compassionately breathing out warmth.
Thawing mine & the world’s blossoms;
Once revealed, grateful at being witnessed.

Feb 1 blossom 4

This morning’s warmed moment’s potential
of next warmed moment’s possible
makes me smile as I discover
another hidden rose bud, inside.

“So take refuge in Mother Earth and surrender to her and ask her to heal us, to help us.
And we have to accept that the worst can happen;
that most of us will die as a species and many other species will die also and Mother Earth will be capable
after maybe a few million years to bring us out again and this time wiser.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Feb 1 blossom 2


Calmly Camped ‘tween Falls & Firestorm

Burney Falls flowing chill~d nelson

Heading north, out on a joyful camping holiday
picturing grandparents motoring west,
seeking refuge & religious freedom
from repression, they experienced back east.

campin’ 1950 ford custom woody ~all images by d nelson

Ahh, to encounter Volcanic Legacy Byway’s
free-flowing, free-falling waters
high in rugged, forested northern California
between tranquil Shasta & Lassen volcanoes.
Experiencing freedom ancestors sought.

Lassen falls heat relief

After wonderfully blissful, but hot forest days
being cooled by lakes, rivers & spray
the sky became increasingly smoky.
Breathing in awareness of unhealthy
air pollution particulates drying throat & eyes.
May those close to the smoke’s source be safe.

the smoked-red sun reflects on upper Sacramento river

Feeling relaxed, though concerned, headed home,
with hours of dark, smoke-blanketed driving conditions.
Heard that deadly Carr fire consumed 130,000 acres, including neighborhoods;
a devastating 143 mph fire tornado, west of our camping locations.
Arriving home to find bomber planes, helicopters,
& an army of firefighters battling blazes on the edge of our town.
Today’s local report: Hot, dry, windy conditions fuel Mendocino complex fire which has scorched 240 square miles (621 square kilometers), destroyed 41 residences and threatened 9,200 homes, only 30% contained.

smoke swirls eastern Cow mtn

Moments of transition are most powerful times for
practicing being aware of whats going on.
Moments where we may not always be paying attention.
Moments where we lose our peace & happiness.
The moments between sitting, standing & walking.
The moment between an in breath & out breath.
For me, walking meditation has been a most valuable practice
to cultivate awareness of in-between times.
I believe this helped me maintain freedom & equanimity
transitioning between nature’s paradise & catastrophe.

feel flow’s spray

Dear friend, we all can arrive at our destination with every step, every breath.
Enjoying the contact of our feet on earth.
Experiencing that we have time, we have enough space.
Being present for the beautiful sunset, the blossoms, or even disasters, along our path.
Living life deeply and wonderfully. Taking steps, being completely ourselves,
with no place to go, nothing to do, no longer in a hurry.
Honoring ancestors dream of touching true peace & freedom,
by arriving home, in the wonderful present moment.

“While you are walking, smile and be in the here and now, and you will transform that place into paradise.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Stopped by Mohave’s Mindfulness Lesson

marveling Mohave’s resilience ~d nelson

Sentimental journey down route 66
past San Bernardino mtn’s snowy peaks
into winter’s pleasant Mohave Desert.
A place I lived & worked many years.

One of the desert’s esteemed, waving residents,
the many-armed yuccas known as Joshua trees,
advice motorists & trains, alike,
to slow down, stop and be present.
Knowing that this precious desert being
understands resilience & fragility, I stop to listen.

See our uncrowded forest standing
joyfully; doing nothing more
than being present for ourselves, the sky,
the wind, the cold & the heat?
Can you do this, too?

By intentionally making time
to be aware & concentrated,
it’s possible to see the true nature
of what is right in front of you!
Can you do that, too?

Seeing the cloud in your ice tea,
seeing the misperception in your anger,
seeing the impermanent, non-self
nature of your self, are all possible
insights when truly paying attention.

Being stable, peaceful & without discrimination
makes you worthy of actions which
beneficially, help other’s survival;
not creating division or rocking the boat
during turbulent, dangerous times.

Sentinal of love

Lastly, the trees reminded me
that they, and other desert dwellers
are doing their best to adapt,
to stay calm despite increased heat
& fewer & fewer drops of rain.
Accepting the truth of things as they are.
Since 2001, the planet has recorded 17 of its 18
warmest years since record-keeping began (NASA).
Calmly, may you breathe in warm,
breathe out cool, dear ones.

Inner Explorers’ Courageous Acts of Curiosity

The future of all life, including our own, depends on our mindful steps. We have to hear the bells of mindfulness that are sounding all across our planet. We have to start learning how to live in a way so that a future will be possible for our children and our grandchildren. ~Thich Nhat Hanh

mindful steps upon mother earth ~d nelson

Curious meditators diligently
collect, then release data;
cultivating hearts of understanding
& minds of love.
As experienced practitioners
they seek to distinguish
science fact from science fiction.

Space: The final frontier!
These, the voyages of diligent contemplators
on lifelong missions;
To explore strange, ever-changing inner & outer worlds;
To protect all life and live in harmony with all civilizations
To boldly go where no fool has gone before.

Stay authentic to your heart & mind
dear seekers of truth.
All who have come before,
those who are here now,
and descendents still to come,
here on mother earth & beyond
depend on your wise action.

Please support each other
on & off the meditation cushion
with smiles, love & kindness
as our time, in the here
& now, is of the essence
when looking into climate,
ozone, & other darkness’, especially
Earth’s 6th great mass extinction.

Letters of Love Deluge O’er Me

Nothing can survive without food. Everything we consume acts either to heal us or to poison us. We tend to think of nourishment only as what we eat through our mouths; but what we consume with our eyes, our ears, our nose, our tongue, and our body is also food. ~Thích Nhất Hạnh, the Art of Communication

After Love's Deluge ~d nelson

After Love’s Deluge ~d nelson

We know that everything needs food
including our love;
the love burning inside
& our love over there.
Our sadness, also
will always linger if kept fed.

After Love's Deluge 3

After Love’s Deluge 3

Desiring use of kind, loving words
& practicing using such words
of love is a type of food.
Our volition, or deepest aspiration
is an important nutriment;
like downing a refreshing glass of water
quenching drought-induced thirst
within ourselves & the world.

rain letter

rain letter

Quite often it’s useful to write down
our words and meditate on them,
ensuring they are words we really mean.
Let heart’s expression freely flow.
Inspired words, conceived, written & rehearsed.
Writing love letters is a practice
of cultivating inner love & peace
instead of fear, anger or blame.
Our loved ones eagerly await such letters.

After Love's Deluge 2

After Love’s Deluge 2; flooded

We can also write love letters on topical issues
concerning ourselves, our community, our planet.
This helps us come from a place
of love & compassion and not despair or rage
when addressing issues as significant as survival.
Important concerns written clearly
with heartfelt, loving words can touch
hearts of our elected officials, civil servants & journalists.

Candy might be dandy
& floral expressions, divine.
But, upon receiving an emotional
deluge from your loving words,
imagine your dear valentine’s true smile.
Can you also, visualize the potential
heart opening affect
on even our most love
starved public servants.

peace letter

peace letter

Possible steps for writing a love letter (but do what feels right for you) :
1. Meditate for 20-30 minutes. Bring to mind what you want to write about, what moves you to write this letter. Bring to mind the person you’re writing to, what you love about them, what you’re grateful for, what moves your compassion for them.

2. Allow 30 minutes to write a love letter, sharing from the heart.

3. Ask a trusted friend to read the letter and reflect on it with you.

4. Wait a day or two. Re-read the letter. Revise if you see ways to make your love and compassion more clear.

5. Send your letter 🙂

An example love letter Here & Here, too

You already know the names of loved ones & friends.
Names & contact information of U.S.A. elected officials & current issues at these links:

This post inspired by current social and legislative events &
this song 🙂

Picturing a Car-Free, E-Bike Adventure

Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride. ~John F. Kennedy, U.S. president


How fortunate not routinely having
to travel any faster than I can pedal;
enjoying day after car-free days.
But I’ll share a little secret
about how I’ve compensated for aches,
fatigue & other blessings of another birthday:
an electric bike!

Wonderful still being able to cycle
without fear of hills or going away far
then not being able to come back easily.
Pollution-free, non-sweaty
commuting, shopping, errands
& super fun, heart pumping cardio.
Even in times like these it’s still OK
to be happy & have fun, is it not?

E-bicycles offer cost savings over a car (or second car);
as no licensing or insurance required.
There are cargo versions available, perfect
for hauling the kids or trips to the lumber yard.
Still feeling pedal-powered,
waving & ringing the bell as I go by,
connection with community.

Dear Friends, y’all are invited
to enjoy a car-free day at least once a week,
perhaps on a traditional bike, ready-made electric bike
or with a do-it-yourself bike motor kit on your old bike.
Did you know that every mile a car is driven
releases one pound of greenhouse gas
into the atmosphere increasing global warming?
Resilience is up to us, together, as a political
solution to arctic melting seems improbable.

A whole lot of info available at

When you realize the Earth is so much more than simply your environment, you’ll be moved to protect her in the same way as you would yourself. This is the kind of awareness, the kind of awakening that we need, and the future of the planet depends on whether we’re able to cultivate this insight or not. The Earth and all species on Earth are in real danger. Yet if we can develop a deep relationship with the Earth, we’ll have enough love, strength and awakening in order to change our way of life. ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Will 2016 Be Remembered As Another Vintage Year?

Start by doing what’s necessary;
then do what’s possible;
and suddenly you are doing the impossible. ~ St. Francis of Assisi

our vintage, now ~d nelson

our vintage, now ~d nelson

Many of us are rejoicing
at this harvest’s bounty.
Patiently following sun,
rain, soil ,toil & good fortune
the fruits of our labors
are being stomped in vats
to release their juices
& commence fermentation.

After aging, then bottling
and even more mysterious aging -a revealing decanting!
Some may find hints of apricot,
or perhaps chocolate and lilacs.
Those with sensitive palates
will find hints of manure,
sulfur & other toxins.

Loving words will glisten
against the shiny crystal,
while sediments of impure
thoughts & actions will float
below the surface, easily disturbed.
We know how long
these bitter tastes have remained.

Ingredients lists will surely include
aspirations of protecting all life,
recognizing that each are connected
to all else, including ourselves.
Generosity & kindness of loved ones
and complete strangers & their children,
welcoming to the table those in need
of safety & connection will beautifully embolden.

Uncork listening with the intent of healing
those in such pain that they
may become a terrorist to themselves
or to entire continents unless befriended.
This, of course, includes ourself.
Our glass may be half full of sorrow & pain
& also half empty of empathy & happiness
but as skillful winemakers
we know that an embrace of equanimity
makes a fragrant future possible.

our vintage, now 4

our vintage, now 4

Let us raise our glass to the possible.