Jahruneel Thyja Rai: Two Poems

Untitled Nar

You hear the horns of Valhalla calling
Humans Whaling
Dear Children of the Wild
May your kingdom never fall
May the sun bathe you in glorious light
May you walk through the golden Field of Reeds
Paradise, free of Orcas
Free of human ridicule
Free of the micro aggression that plagues Mother Earth
May you never have to bathroom in the shade of Catalpa Trees
May your voices and songs be heard
Projected like thunder, striking hearts like lightning
May you never be limited by human imitations
May you be able to embrace yourself
To embrace your heart and ancestors
Delicate yet bright
Fragile yet strong
Your heart of gladden
Better than the hearts of stone that inhabit our world
If a heart of Stone attempts to shatter you whole
Say touch me not, and stand tall like bisons and bulls
But never only fall for the red if Catalpa Trees
See the light of fireflies as a trail to Valhalla that calls

(This poem I wrote in my Nature’s class, inspired by the book we were reading called “World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments” by Aimee Nezhukumatathil. Reading through and listening to my class discuss the chapters really intrigued me. The chapter I had was on the Narwhal, a line that I liked being “nar is a Norse word meaning ‘like a corpse’.” From there I incorporated the use of songs and other readings I had been exposed to. Mainly the poem I wanted to convey the sense of being happy with oneself and proud of their culture. Mainly because these are themes mentioned in the book.)


An I for a Thou

“Mundus vult decipi. The world winks at dishonesty. The world does not call it dishonesty.” — Martin Buber

We flirt with deception
Oh great white owl
How strix society is
Never refer to destruction as pain
The mountain of bison skulls is to climb
Our achievements mounted upon them
The four horsemen of the apocalypse
Hidden by the in between of taxidermy and film
Melted ice caps & warm tropics never suited for grolar bears
Ligers gain weight in health sickness
And you great White Owl mimic feathers of dinosaurs
Forced by circumstance
A shame you have become I-It like the rest
Do you still see us as I-You?
We humanity live in an I-You with denial of reality
You are in pain, oh Great White Owl
I am mourning, mourning you.

(This poem was written in my honors Love class, our guest speaker, Jennifer Peterson, had been presenting that day. She had mentioned the white owl and presented an image of a mountain of bison skulls. Using that as inspiration with the work of Martin Buber, I created a poem reflecting on how we humans tend to ignore a lot of bad in the world, as ignorance is bliss to us. This poem reflects my confusion and inner turmoil I have regarding the world and how the earth and animals suffer. Some animals grow closer to extinction day by day, which breaks my heart so I decided to write about it.)

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