poem, women

Earth’s Cauldron- an epic poem

The last day of Winter in the Northern Hemisphere, 2020
Boulder Beach, Lake Mead National Monument, Boulder City, Nevada

Dear Ones,

This is Gail’s friend and mentee Becky Suzik here. I am writing to extend Gail’s wishes to offer the beginnings of an epic poem we write together. You are invited to play and add your poems, photos, art pieces to “Earth’s Cauldron”.

Gail said to me today, “We are in an unknown time. A time that is not old, and not new, but completely unknown.”  This after saying yesterday how much we are deeply in need play right now.

Please accept this loving, playful and soulful invitation to contribute to this poem beginning with our elders Gail and Janis Clark-Monaco’s entries. Read the beginning entries “Earth’s Caldron” and add your contributions to the comments section below or email us.

We wonder: how might you make sense of our hurting world right now, through writing, artmaking, creating, playing in our collaborative poem?

Thank you for the gifts you have brought to the world, for simply being you, and here to witness the unknown. Thank you for all of the ways you are showing up, hurting deeply, loving and responding.


Love, Becky, Gail & Janis



The Sun will shine on my natal Moon today
Heralding for the 70th time since I was born
At 0° Aries, Equinox brings equality and humility
Reset to Meg’s question: Who do we choose to be?

Casablanca blinks brightly above the “closed” sign
Home state Idaho in our sights guided by a shadow ―
Like 100 years of other superbugs, this one is a gift
Certainly if we see the gift as connection, we will rise.

Perhaps that’s the ‘who’ I want to be, one who ascends
Nine months ago my consciousness insisted I become useful ―
When initiation gradually came to me this became my mantra
All circumstances considered, I choose to be useful.

Thank you Meg Wheatley for the conversation about collapse
Funny how words prepare us, heart words now spoken
Will rise through this crack in the world, ideas will incubate
In our inner worlds seeking fertile soils to sprout and flower.

Pray every day as a death doula, one who summons re-birth
Earth Goddess Gaia alerted us about tipping points ―
Overshoots, some of us read those red flags as warnings
We began imagining a more beautiful world of possibilities.

We beat our ancient drums of mourning as loses mount
Our collective dance must include a celebration of our labors
Call out the midwives, a birthing comes our way
Birth always requires a Ceremony as does Equinox.

My beloved humans, seek and find your umbilical cords,
Any new journey of initiation can feel inhospitable,
Like a birth canal, this pregnant threshold offers a gateway
Tune your brain with drum and rattle, listen, listen.

After Ceremony, in the midst of grief, midwives gather
In Sacred Circles all around the globe, intentions emerge
To choose well, to find service, to become more useful
Play your Venus card, tell each other what you value.

Welcome love into these conversations, it may be all there is
If you want more, welcome generosity and humility
Venus needs Mars, so welcome action into our circles
Begin to visualize collective consciousness shifting.


Like a call and response, her friend began spinning her into Ceremony:


Cedar, Western Red they say. Mother, I say.
When I touched the shredded bark,
A shot of electric current greeted me. Noticeable, but not harmful
I looked over my shoulder, and up to see how Sun penetrated these woods.
Here is power. Wisdom. 300 years old.

Ten minutes to walk around this Cedar, listening, kissing, dreaming.
I spread my arms and placed my breasts against her bark,
The way to channel 300 years of wise experience is to ask questions.
This is where relationship begins.
“What do you think Great Mother. Are humans going to continue?”
―Coyote knew to be blunt, direct.
“Not in their current configuration,
Humans will not get through their grief unless they grow close in spirit,
Closer to Trees. You could show the way, old woman.”

The spirits were laughing. “It’s true. Losing capacity sharpens other abilities.”
This is the Elder learning curve: I received Tree’s gifts.
One of those had no limits―grief will be endless.
“Dance for me,” Tree asked.
Knees not what they used to be, hips … oh dear Goddess.
“Would you settle for a little waltz, Mother Cedar?”
I danced a merry-go-around with Mother Tree,
Emptying and allowing joy to rise like the Moon.
Reversed directions and rose like the Sun,
Looking up and looking down. Celebrating and honoring
With little rituals, this is the way forward.
A crow cawed. “Hello to you too, Crow.”
“These are my people.” It was true.
“You are all Ancestors of each other, you left Crows behind to call your name.”
“How many people have danced for you, Cedar?”
None for 50 years, before that, only a few.

Divine thoughts flowed from this Tree.
I began to weep, a gift of moment or grief?
“All things simultaneous.”
I laid out to touch Earth full length and spread my arms wide.