“we are of a tribe” by alberto rios

“I’m a ‘blue sky thinker’ and dream big.” (Hilary Knight)

“Wheatfields Under Thunderclouds,” by Vincent Van Gogh (1890)


There is only one race — the human race. And we must never give up on our dreams.


Vladimir Kush


by Alberto Ríos

We plant seeds in the ground
And dreams in the sky.

Hoping that, someday, the roots of one
Will meet the upstretched limbs of the other.

It has not happened yet.
We are the sky, all of us, the whole world:

Together, we are a tribe of eyes that look upward,
Even as we stand on uncertain ground.

The earth beneath us moves, quiet and wild,
Its boundaries shifting, its muscles wavering.

The dream of sky is indifferent to all this,
Impervious to borders, fences, reservations.

The sky is our common home, the place we all live.
There we are in the world together.

The dream of sky requires no passport.
Blue will not be fenced. Blue will not be a crime.

Look up. Stay awhile. Let your breathing slow.
Know that you always have a home here.

~ from Poetry of Presence: An Anthology of Mindfulness Poems, edited by Phyllis Cole-Dai and Ruby R. Wilson (Grayson Books, 2017)


Vladimir Kush




There’s lots of talk these days about borders, walls, who belongs and who doesn’t. Talk of one color being superior to another, talk of entitlement.

There is selfish indignation that welcoming newcomers will somehow diminish one’s own security and economic opportunities, with worry over being displaced, disregarded, devalued.

This inspiring and life affirming poem is a call to embrace our common humanity, a meditation on creating our own nirvana.

Blue sky = symbol of heaven, divinity, peace, infinite possibilities.

I love the layers of meaning the poet wove into his poem. No one can take away our right or ability to dream. There are no walls big enough to contain human potential or imagination. Above all, there is always hope.



The lovely and talented Jone MacCulloch is hosting the Roundup at Deo Writer. Zip on over to check out the full menu of poetic goodness being shared around the blogosphere this week. Have a nice weekend!

Copyright © 2020 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

26 thoughts on ““we are of a tribe” by alberto rios

  1. It was a brilliant move to pair Albertos Rios’s poem with Vladimir Kush’s art (which I wasn’t familiar with until now… I looked up more and WOW.) Both are so richly layered and invite us to dream big. A beautiful, reflective, and thoughtful post, Jama.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the kind words, Michelle. I’m in awe of Kush’s art and was glad to find images that seemed to pair well with Rios’s poem. 🙂


  2. Here, here..I love that opening “we plant seeds in the ground/dreams in the sky.” There are so many more that are beautiful, too, calling us to dream and to remember that we are together.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “requires no passport./Blue will not be fenced” Wonder of wonders is the sky. I always love the phrase, “look up, and you will be blessed”. Rios knows that. Thank you, Jama!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow. A stunning poem and accompanying paintings. Alas, I’m feeling a bit blue tonight. I need to look up at the sky. I hope I can see some blue tomorrow. X

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you for the beautiful poem you shared, Jama.
    Together, we are a tribe of eyes that look upward,
    Even as we stand on uncertain ground.
    These lines along with Vladimir Kush’s inspirational artwork allow for us to ponder our collective humanity.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We need to keep “our common humanity” in mind, especially in these divisive times, when it seems easier to point out our differences rather than what we all share as human beings.


  6. A beautiful post, Jama, and a beautiful poem — both go straight to the heart of our humanity, as does that gorgeous art. This week has left me feeling blue, too, with the events and votes in Washington, but I want to be a blue sky thinker and dream big.

    Liked by 1 person

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