Dr. Tom Kazo's Writings

 
Witness
I have walked up, over and around the mountains of the world, have observed the meadows from above and have played with butterflies on the plains.

Wandering the beaches, I have found amusement with the fishes in the surf, then took to the sea in ships with wings of cloth, crafted with the strength of the forest.

Upon that sea, my vessel is so small. Mine eyes reflect a world of blue. It is now myself that is under the scrutinizing curiosity of the creatures of its depths. My heart races as dolphins pace my vessel in play… whales surface and blow wet kisses across my bow. Their awesome size and display of strength does not bring fear but a passage of gentleness to be partaken by both. After all, we are sharing such a small parcel of the vastness of gemstone.

What kind of creatures inhabit this ocean’s depths? What mysteries does it hold for those who venture by the wind to its places? The sea in itself, by its own command can be placid but never tamed. It, and the wind, can impose fearful respect for any who might attempt.

I choose to not combat the sea, but only to try to understand and cherish the awards of wisdom it may bestow upon me. Out here I am so small to be a part of this web of life, but deep within me I know that somewhere I do belong. I feel a special peace in knowing that.

My desire to learn, my thoughts to understand, and my willingness to participate push me forward with a purposeful but cautious enthusiasm.

I now have experienced and have borne witness to the most exquisite exhibitions of art on the earth, the first being the sunrise: Grayness of dawn allows you time to prepare for this extravaganza. Over a straight-lined horizon, my eyes dazzle as the first orange beams of light dance amongst the wavetops, announcing a new day is upon us: the sea is awake!

Like silver arrows, countless fish launch themselves into the air as if shot by as many archers hidden beneath the waves. The morning haze rises in columns, supporting a measureless stage of activity and beauty. Every day the stage is different, the cast is sometimes changed; but every single daily performance is unique, exquisite and never to again be repeated.

I have learned to cherish these moments of free mastery.

The wind has taken my intrepid craft countless days before the sea. I find myself not abandoned in this endeavour but at ease with inner tranquility. Two of the earth’s greatest powers have given me safe passage and have enabled me to roam freely in their midst.

On an early morn, bathed in the brightness of day, an isle of green brings itself into view. This land, most possibly not my own, offers intrigue that is worthy of my investigation. No perilous reefs warn me away from its mangrove coast. The depths of the ocean release me as I drift into the shallows of the bay. The forest has met the sea.

A new moistness in the air has filled me with a cornucopia of pleasant smells: those of the mangrove, bird, and beast and still many which have not yet been identified.

The spider-like legs of the walking trees of this area hold still more mysteries of this life that will unravel to the watchful eye. Beneath me the water is layered with millions of fish of graduating size. These mangroves are their nursery and juvenile homes. When mature, they will gravitate to their proper place in the sea; this to be repeated time and time again until they are no more and cannot return, or this seaside forest no longer exists to serve as this precious shelter.

On the surface, a thousand little creatures play, on the roots of the trees are crabs of all color and size giving me a musical welcome like the sound of a thousand castanets. They play hide and seek as my canoe glides through their enchanted forest.

The trees are alive with birds of all descriptions: the pelicans, herons, ibis, cormorants, and even the roseate spoonbill find this salt water entanglement home. My new-found friends bring a radiance of color to the emerald green.

Traveling inward from the sea, the mangroves form tunnels over tidal canals that move the ocean’s waters far inland to mix with the waters of the lakes and streams. Venturing into one of these alluring corridors, I am awed at what length Nature has gone to place a fantasy land on Earth. Containing my craft and me is a narrow waterway that, cascaded by sunlight streaking through the trees like golden spears, allows my eyes to look in any direction and feast on as many species of flowers that one’s memory can hold. Formations of epiphytes, bromeliads, and lilies abound. Ferns embrace Mother Nature’s corsage of orchids; so many colors and sizes it baffles my mind.

For days I explore these inward passages and bays. I share an interlude of quiet but for the sounds of Nature at her virgin best. A harmony of music most pleasant is formed by my paddle as I drift along.

So many of my questions have been answered, but yet I have so many more questions to ask. Still yet, will there be time to seek the answers before the madness of machines and our greed extinguish the beauty, wisdom and knowledge that this Utopia of Nature holds?

As I traverse in fear of the “real” world as some may refer, the second of the great wonders of this world will take place. Gatherings of moon dust spill over my craft as I follow its light into the night. This night is one of its full splendor, rising red within moments of the last embers of sun leaving the opposite sky: truly a vision to behold.

Soon its crimson will turn into a doubloon of gold, shimmering the waves on the path I follow. More slowly will it rise after the light of day has gone, until it rests beyond the sight of my eyes.

But blind in the darkness I am not. A new and most stunning apparition will mesmerize my eyes. A million, a true million, bits of sparkling glass stretch to the outer edges of my imagination. In this enchanted copse of twinkling lights I will study these stars as did the philosophers of an era long past. Their accuracy and imagination of these other heavenly bodies’ placements have been tested and have survived the trials of ancient mariners. Should I not make error with these constellations of celestial navigation, the ebony wake of night will direct my paddles to a homeward port, fulfilling a dream, earning only the smallest of Nature’s tributes, but creating the utmost desire to share my thoughts with Man.

The final segment of my journey is now near complete, I need not check the stars or charts to know this, as my eyes and ears have tuned the rhythm of Nature. The muddy waters have replaced the clear; ducks and swans no longer swim where bottles and trash clog the rivers that ran so free. A playful otter will not be seen; nor will the cry of the osprey be heard. The aftermath of Man is here, his disregarded and left-over. I wonder if he has even seen what beauty was here before he acted? It is hard to concentrate as machines, capable of destroying in mere moments years of time-tested beauty, have frightened the birds from the sky. If only the tears in my eyes could reflect the majesty I have witnessed, they might stop, look, and even listen.

They just might. It may be all that is left.