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Rowland Russell

"fostering connection through a life of creative integrity"

Keene, NH, USA
male, age 61
Joined Jul 6, 2008

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Where do crows go when it rains?
I picture them in dusky
      midnight taverns,
the neon blush of Schlitz and Miller
      a dull patina on slick ebony feathers.
Others cluster in the hard
      shadows of alleyways,
      blinking at street-lights and pulling slowly
            on shared cigarettes,
      waiting for morning.

When I look for them though, I find
      only the bar stools
      worn shiny by their scaly feet,
            and cryptic crow graffiti
            scrawled on the wet brick.
They must have a home
      but I do not know where it is.

To find it, I
      have been told I
      must have a plan.
By habit,
I decide to search first - all
      the places I do not
      expect to find crows,
so that I will not be
      greatly disappointed
      at my lack of success.
It is a comfortable plan
      but it does not help me to find crows.

I find pigeons though.
I decide that from now on I
      will look for them instead.
I am quite successful,
      though the search feels hollow.
There are many pigeons
      but I do not actually care
      where they go when it rains.
It is a comfortable plan
      but it does not satisfy me.

I make a new commitment to
      finding crows.
This time I will ask for help.
 An old man at the bar
      says he knows the place,
        his daughter married a crow.
His rough hands smooth
      a wrinkled napkin.
He draws a map.
I slip it into my pocket and leave.
Outside, I walk confidently
      in the opposite direction.
      I am not ready to find
      what I am looking for,
          but I am unwilling to appear unsure.
It is a comfortable plan
      but it does not bring me any nearer to crows.

I stop.
The rain laughs in puddles
      on the sidewalk.
Time stretches between lamp posts.
A low light touches the
      heavy undersides of clouds
      to the east and I move again.
I walk randomly,
      navigating the narrow streets
      by intuition.
I am wet.
I am tired.
I am not sure where I am
      or where the crows are.
Morning is coming
      and I am far from home.
I keep walking.
It is not a comfortable plan
      but it is the one
      that matters most to me.

R.S. Russell

Personal Professional Contact Singles
Joined Jul 6, 2008 Activist Aspirations undeclared 
Here for Job Search, Professional Connections 
Group Host of none yet
Groups Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund - Electing Pro-Wildlife Leaders, Earth Day
Hometown Montrose, PA 
Birthday Feb 02, 1957  
About Me
  Introduce yourself to Rowland
Activist Aspirations
Political Leaning
Eating Habits  
Wild Fact About Me
My Philosophy John Muir said "If you try to pick out anything by itself, you find it hitched to every other thing in the universe." All my work is about making, restoring, enlivening and celebrating those connections; between people and place, inner and outer, bridging gaps, embracing paradox and gently poking fun at myself and life.
What Gives Me Hope 99% of our time on the planet has been spent in small, close-knit community in reciprocal relationship with our local landscapes. Underneath it all, this is still what makes us human, still what drives us at our core. When we slow down and pay attention to what's around us, between us, within us, we remember.
If I were Mayor, I'd make the world a better place by promoting local food sovereignty and energy intependence
What/who changed my life and why I first met Jehile Kirkuff, a former world champion fiddler, when I was 20 and he 70* and living in a ramshackle house with no electricity or running water in the back hills of PA. Blind, with emphysema and arthritis, Jehile was the happiest man I've ever met. Upon meeting me, he placed his wizened hands alongside my face (to literally get a feel for me) and asked me a question that still resonates today "So tell em, what do you love to do?"
What Bugs Me  
Passions fireflies, crickets, redwing blackbirds, landscape, walking, writing, music, art, frenh roast coffee  
Inspirations North American landscape, exemplary writing, evocative art, provocative conversation  
What Scares Me humorlessness, inattention to place, fast pace of life, class inequities, polarized thinking, fundamentalism (of any kind)  
Role Models Aldo Leopold, Jim Corbett, Mari Sandoz, Henry Miller, Edward Weston, Wim Wenders, Andrew Wyeth, Edward Hopper, David Bohm, Mark Twain, Pema Chodron, Thich Nhat Hanh, Thomas Merton, Annie Dillard, Sigurd Olson, Esther Krainus-James, Jehile Kirkuff  
Quotation It could be that there's only one word and it's all we need. It's here in this pencil. Every pencil in the world is like this. - W.S. Merwin
Interests environmental arts/literature, ecopsychology  
Books A Sand County Almanac, Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Comedy of Survival, 100 Years of Solitude, Desert Notes/River Notes, The Unexpected Universe, The Alexandria Quartet, Keith County Journal, The River Why, Ecotopia Emerging, The Other Way to Listen, Desert Solitaire  
Music Iron &amp, Wine, Calexico, Townes Van Zandt, Tom Waits, Gillian Welch, Greg Brown, Seals and Crofts, Joni Mitchell, The Beatles, Crosby Stills and Nash, Neil Young  
Movies Wings of Desire, Before Sunrise, Once, Life and Nothing But, My Life as a Dog, The Double Life of Veronique, Jean de Florette/Manon of Spring, Groundhog Day, My Twentieth Century, Betty Blue, The Station Agent, The Unbearable Lightness of Being  
TV Shows Jericho, Heroes, Lost, Roswell, My So Called Life, M*A*S*H, All in the Family, Meeting of Minds, Twilight Zone (original)  
Favorite Foods  
Favorite Places The Flint Hills of Kansas, The Nebraska Sandhills, Death Valley - Saline Valley, Gap Mountain - Troy NH, Greenlawn Cemetery - Keene NH, McKittrick Canyon - Guadalupe Mountains, Bandelier National Monument, Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, Belltown P-Patch - Seat  
Can't Live Without  
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