March 2023 Issue

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by Molly Brown

Recorded by Molly Brown


For this March 2023 issue of Deep Times, the editorial team decided to have an open theme. Yet, like in previous issues for which we didn’t have themes, a theme emerged from the submissions. Guess what?  It’s emergence!

Emergence seems to be in the air these days, as we humans grapple with ever more challenging crises–climate disruption and pollution of air, water, and soil; racism, oppression, and caste systems; financial/economic inequality and breakdown; species extinction, and so much more.  We obviously can’t resolve these crises with our current worldviews and institutions, so we must look beyond the known to what is trying to emerge from the living system of Earth.  That’s how living systems evolve: through creative and unpredictable emergence. 

Recently, my spouse and I were reflecting on the words “emergence” and “emergency.”  It occurred to us that an emergency is when something emerges so quickly and/or so unexpectedly that we don’t know how to respond.  We have to rely on our instincts and intuition in such moments, and we may be surprised at what emerges from within.  

Can we learn to “tune into” what is emerging and what is trying to emerge, as frightening and unfamiliar as it may be?  Can we open ourselves to mystery and make ourselves available to support healthy emergence?  Many of the practices of Work That Reconnects help people do just that, often through the exercise of what Joanna calls our “moral imagination.”   Even though the poems and articles in this issue may not speak directly to emergence as a theme, they all have emerged from the creative life of the authors in response to themes, concepts, and practices of the Work That Reconnects.

The Spiral begins with gratitude, with poems by Kent Wittenburg and Patricia Samper celebrating trees and gardens, and Rebecca Selove describes how she sees our editorial team working with emergent strategy in our meetings. 

In Honoring Our Pain for the World, Leo Murray offers a “Dirge for the Ocean.”  Michael Wellman shares his understanding of the necessity of grieving that came through his graduate work and dissertation.  Kirsi Jansa eloquently describes her process in honoring her pain for the world, followed by Will Falk’s poem “Gaia’s got a lot to do.” 

Three poems by Andrea Bradney, Sophie Hayat, and Danielle Vogel invite us to See with New and Ancient EyesJessica Zeller challenges us to expand the boundaries of our identity and Pegi Eyers shares her “truth-tales” of immersive experiences in nature.  

Our Going Forth section shows how the Work That Reconnects can inspire and support: climate activism (by Kirsty Heron and Tom Deacon), sustainability researchers in academia (by Eileen Laurie),  and musical expression (by Linda Chase).  Poems by Cheryl Pallant and Susi Moser grace this theme as well. 

Michael Wellman explores identity and community in Evolving EdgeResources include a review of a new book by Debora Eden Tull and short reviews of books and magazines in “Our Editors Are Reading.”  The Network section features news of a Gaian Gathering, new website, and new Weavers.

The editorial team put out a call for “words that reconnect,” which Valia Papoutsaki is now collating for our September issue.   This is an invitation to co-create, (re)imagine and (re)interpret as well as (re)embrace an emergent (or latent) vocabulary for a deeper sense of connection that reflects our current times and the need for socio-economic, cultural, and environmental change–a vocabulary that also reflects the diverse contexts in which the Work That Reconnects is now being practiced.  Valia has already received over a dozen emergent words and would like more.  Send us your choice of one to three “words that reconnect” with up to 100 words describing what this word means to you and how you could use it. Send to  [email protected]

May we support one another as we grapple with the Great Unraveling and work for the Great Turning, knowing that we can neither predict nor control what will emerge from the creative interactions of the living systems of Earth.


Tree of Knowledge

Poem by Kent Wittenburg

The Deep Times Editorial Board’s Emergent Strategy

by Rebecca Selove
Drawing on the work of adrienne maree brown and other authors, Rebecca describes how the editorial team of Deep Times uses "emergent strategy" in creating each issue of the journal.

Un jardín para una montaña mágica

Poem by Patricia Samper

Honoring Our Pain for the World

Dirge for the ocean

Poem by Leo Murray

Rewilding Activism

Interview with Michael Wellman by Molly Brown
Part One of a two part interview focuses on Honoring Our Pain for the World as explored in Michael's dissertation.


by Kirsi Jansa
An eloquent essay inviting us to deeply honor our grief for the world, "to come to our hearts and our senses."

Gaia’s got a lot to do

Poem by Will Falk

Seeing with New/Ancient Eyes

The Counsel of Trees

Poem by Andrea Bradney

Expanding the Boundaries of Our Identity

by Jessica Jean Zeller
The author challenges us all to expand our identity to become cells in the greater body of Gaia, of Earth.

It’s Not About Me

Poem by Sophie Hayat

The Interbeing of Animism

by Pegi Eyers
This narrative shares a collection of “truth-tales” drawing on the author's encounters with the more-than-human world, and immersive experiences in nature.

The Frequency of Flowers

Poem by Danielle Vogel

Going Forth

Seasonal Forecast

Poem by Cheryl Pallant

Love, Rage, Rebel: Hope in climate activism

by Kirsty Heron and Tom Deacon
The authors recount how they are supporting movements for climate justice with the Work That Reconnects, drawing on their experience with Just Stop Oil, Insulate Britain, Extinction Rebellion and global activists during COP26 in Glasgow

The Work That Reconnects in Academia – Visioning an imperfect but possible future

by Eileen Laurie
The author describes her 2022 Spiral workshop "Visioning an imperfect yet possible future: Art-based methods for sustainability researchers," at Lund University’s Agenda 2030 Graduate School in Sweden.

The Spiral – a musical journey

by Linda J. Chase
The author explores how music and poetry can help us grapple with our fears and articulate a vision of hope.

learning to say good-bye

Poem by Susi Moser

Evolving Edge

Reconnecting with Identity: Locating commonality in intersections

by Michael Wellmann
The author explores how activists can expand the intersections of our identities to find more common ground while also continuing to embrace our individual diversity.


Luminous Darkness: Book Review

Book review by Valia Papoutsaki
Debora Eden Tull’s book aims to reinstate the “darkness” as part of the whole by bringing to our attention this basket of ancestral and emergent knowledge.

Our Editors are reading…

by Deep Times editorial team
Here are books and an online magazine that members of the Deep Times editorial team are currently reading and recommending.


Network News

by Network staff
News from the Work That Reconnects about a 2023 "Gaian Gathering," a new website, and two new Weavers.

Deep Times: A Journal of The Work That Reconnects

Vol. #8 Issue #1 – March 2023

Editor: Molly Brown
Editorial Team:  Karina Lutz (poetry editor), Rebecca Selove, Carolyn Treadway, Erin Holtz Braeckman, Evangelia (Valia) Papoutsaki, Shayontoni Ghosh and Silvia Di Blasio.  More about the team here.

Graphic Design: Frieda Nixdorf
Webmaster:  Silvia Di Blasio & Shayontoni Ghosh

Deep Times is published online twice a year by the Work That Reconnects Network.

The Network provides support, guidance, and inspiration to people all over the world in their work for the Great Turning. We welcome your donations to support the Work That Reconnects Network and Deep Times. The Work That Reconnects Network is currently a fiscal project of Inquiring Systems, Inc. so all donations are tax-deductible.

Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-ShareAlike 4.0.