‘Nature Poem’ by Tommy Pico Review


“NDN teens have the highest rate of suicide of any population group in America. A white man can massacre 9 black ppl in a church and be fed Burger King by the cops afterward. A presidential candidate gains a platform by saying Mexican immigrants are murdered and rapists

It’s hard for me to imagine curiosity [in America] as anything more than a pretext for colonialism” (Tommy Pico, ‘Nature Poem,’ 40).

“Look, I’m sure you really do just want to wear those dream catcher earrings. They’re beautiful. I’m sure you don’t mean any harm, I’m sure you don’t really think abt us at all. I’m sure you don’t understand the concept of off-limits. But what if by not wearing a headdress in yr music video or changing yr damn mascot and perhaps adding .05% of personal annoyance to yr life for the twenty minutes it lasts, the 103 young ppl who tried to kill themselves on the Pine Ridge Indian reservation over the past four months wanted to live 50% more” (Tommy Pico, ‘Nature Poem,’ 56).


to claim one’s self in

Christ: to imagine God’s King-

-dom into being.

What is ‘Basebuilding?’


Foundations built on faith, conviction, and justice.

Collaboration with community, church,

ancestors, prophets,

and future generations.

Unique in poetic and prophetic imagination

speaking and doing

an alternative narrative and

story into being.

Renouncing and denouncing

the narrative and

story of domination and supremacy

through a communal vision,

achievable and concrete,

grassroots grown,

in our ecclesial spaces

and beyond

for the queering and decolonizing

and expanding

and including

of Beloved Community.


Intentional connections and relationships,

with imagination,

as power

and wholistic transformation

for the well-being

of all people and creation.


“Poetic Imagination is the last way left in which to challenge and conflict the dominant reality” (Walter Brueggemann, The Prophetic Imagination, 40).

Brueggemann’s words ring true across history, but particularly in our current reality. Our dominant reality is one of division, strife, truthiness, and extremism. And in the public sphere, Christianity has often been co-opted by that dominant reality as a mechanism for power, order, and sanitization. As a result, Christian poetic imagination must speak truth to the oppressive dominant reality by re-imagining something different, through the power of the creative and creating Holy Spirit. As Christians, we must create alternative narratives to the single story of public Christianity that conservative politics has monopolized.

This blog is a personal and public space for poetic imagination and resistance, creative creation as spiritual practice, and mutual conversation. Please join me in imagining an alternative future, through poetry and other creative practices, toward a world evermore reflective of Christ’s gospel mission proclaimed in Luke 4:18-19:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor” (NRSV).