| I started listening to the music group Oregon in the late 70’s and was lucky enough to see them in concert a few times. The first time was at Arcosanti, an experimental community in AZ, built to embody Paolo Soleri’s concept of arcology – the fusion of architecture with ecology. I was at a music festival and the crowd was waiting to hear Stephen Stills so they weren’t very gracious to this amazing group of jazz musicians. Later I was able to hear both the band and later Ralph Towner, the guitar/pianist, solo, at the beautiful Great American Music Hall in San Francisco.
I used to lay on my floor with headphones on, listening to this band for hours. The unusual way they played their instruments, Collin Walcott’s amazing tabla and sitar playing, Paul McCandless playing a ceramic vessel, stirred something deep within me. I loved how powerful, wandering and emotional their music was and I became quite a fan.
The cover art for their album Roots In The Sky particularly drew me as I’d felt since early childhood that I came from another world, was a visitor on this planet, here to help it in some way, but definitely with “roots” elsewhere. So in contemplating this cover, while informed by the music, I wrote this poem in 1986. I included it in a Christmas card that year and sent it also to President Reagan and congressmen from AZ, pleading with them to end their funding of the covert war in Nicaragua. Later in 1988, I was sitting in a yoga studio, warming up my guitar, waiting for my very young creative movement and music students to arrive and all of a sudden the music came to turn this poem into a song.
Hope you enjoy the poem. Wherever you are from, whatever you are doing here, know that each of you has a contribution to make for this amazing planetary transformation we are in the midst of.
Roots In The Sky
This land, these trees, these flowers
Of which we’re all a part
Let us all heed the call
It is time for us to start My roots are in the sky
But my heart, is here on earth
I feel the call to heal
And sing for her rebirth To begin to heal this darkness,
We’ve created on our mother
It’s important to feel the truth,
That we truly are sisters and brothers So now, let’s sing for love,
Embracing all we see and feel
Blessing the joy, pain and bliss,
Accepting it all, allowing it to heal Light flowing into darkness,
Darkness flowing into light
We can usher in the change,
If we rejoice with all our might My roots are in the sky
Katelon T. Jeffereys
Seattle Wellness Coach