Unless, of course, someone is messing with my kid. Then I channel my Primal Mama and will spare no one.
Nokosee use to joke that the definition of a vegetarian is a "bad hunter." I laughed the first time, smiled the second time, and now just shake my head sadly when I hear him joke about my new eating habits. I've come a long way since he started teaching me how to hunt in the Everglades. Even back then, it wasn't for survival. The food we ate to keep alive during our constant running from the enemy were MREs, "Meals Ready to Eat" that the NS stole from Uncle Sam and camping stores. We never went hungry. Looking back, I hunted for him, for him to love me more. Not any more. He's going to have to love me for whom I am. And he does. Thankfully.
Here's a video I found on the Net. It will make you think twice about hunting.
As I said before, I have no problem killing someone in self-defense or someone trying to kill my baby or husband. I attribute that to my genetically predisposed bad-ass attitude. But, the longer I hole up here at the Embassy, I'm slowly becoming (drum roll)... more pacific. And I think the reason is the Embassy and Reverend Houston, our patron "saint," the Miccosukee who gave us sanctuary from Uncle Sam. When I first met Houston, he was just Houston Cypress, a mellow smart dude who figured out (or so I thought) how to live in both worlds with one moccasin in the past and one Converse All-Star in the present. Since that time, he's come out as a gay man and embraced his "two spirits" (possessing male and female traits), which is part of NA culture. Struggling to accept himself and to find his way in the world-- he had been studying religion at a local university when we met-- he soon became an ordained minister in the Universalist church. I think what moved him in that direction is the same thing moving me now and it's coming from the land the Embassy is sitting on. He told me the Miccosukees consider this place to be sacred. When I first heard that I thought, "Oh, geese, everything is sacred to these guys," and didn't take it seriously. Since I've been here though, I can actually feel the place. In my heart. Very spooky, man.
Anyway, he gave me a book to read about a German Lutheran minister who was hung by the Nazis during World War Two. If you read my books you know I was raised a Lutheran and, when I got the chance after my parent's divorce, ran as fast as I could from the church. Despite half-hearted efforts by my parents, there was nothing they could do to make me go to church. So, when I heard this was a book by a Lutheran minister, you can guess I wasn't all that keen on reading it. But The Reverend, as I call my friend Houston now, insisted and, as a favor, I started reading the book. As it turns out, pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer had balls. And brains. His writings are very influential even today re how to live bravely in a fucked-up world. The book I read is called Letters and Papers From Prison. Surprisingly-- maybe (add spooky music here) this place had something to do with it-- but I actually enjoyed reading it. Even though he knew his death was imminent-- he was hung by the SS only a few days before Hitler committed suicide-- he continued to live bravely with forgiveness in his heart and heightened insight about the meaning of it all. Some of the things he wrote that I have taken to my own heart and mind are: "A god who let us prove his existence would be an idol." "The ultimate test of a moral society is the kind of world that it leaves to its children." I like this one especially since it helps me live with myself -- and the things we did to keep alive while on the run, i.e., we did it for the kids. I also like his take on living in the world, that we must “do the whole thing,” even when we fail, i.e., to give it our best shot which is what the NS did. Unfortunately, he also wrote this: “God is not at the boundaries but in the center, not in weakness but in strength, thus not in death and guilt but in human life and human goodness.”
I want to do good.