Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials
a cooperative effort fostered by Extinction Witness and Pollinator Posse
to honor mothers of all walks for everyone’s benefit.
Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials are common grounds designated with respect for the mother’s chronic grief and lasting joy. Regenerative Memorials may be designated areas in community gardens, verges, meadows, and groves in common or otherwise private forests and parks.
Unlike memorial rose gardens, Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials might be described as managed wild areas meant to increase and maintain healthy biodiverse communities throughout urban and rural landscapes as they support the human grieving process and public displays of grief within the context of life’s complete cycle of birth, decay, death, and birth. In addition to providing areas for reflection and mourning ritual both free of and of any religious doctrine, Regenerative Memorials provide sustenance for all species and unbound by human monetary exchange.
Lucille means light. Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials carry the intention to shed the enduring light of love that is experienced fully through total loss. Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials are thus named in honor of two mothers, Lucille Rocha and Lucille Bertuccio. For more, please see ‘Origins’ below.
Ultimately, Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials are a peacekeeping effort intended to help cultivate and catalyze a shift from honoring death as the greatest sacrifice (warrior) back to honoring birth as the greatest sacrifice (mothering). For more, please see ‘Honoring Birth Above All Feats and Sacrifices’ below.
Fiscal Sponsorship & Skills Support:
Extinction Witness sponsors Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials and maintains an online global map.. With intent to support partnering projects engaged in planting and maintenance, Extinction Witness fosters the designated areas financially as necessary long-term in keeping with our focus on peacekeeping and psychospiritual as ecological regeneration.
Pollinator Posse contributes experience-based knowledge and technical/skills support. These skills include navigating structures of governance and organizing and managing volunteers to establish and maintain the Regenerative Memorials.
Collaborations include those with existing memorial planting projects to honor mothers of all walks and the chronic grief that mother's carry when a child is lost, whether that child be born to oneself or another woman, as well as the child’s grief when their mothers pass.
As with the first at Lake Merritt, planted in 2013, Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials are not necessarily newly planted areas. Again, the Regenerative Memorials are united by intent to foster biodiversity and support the human grieving process within the context of life’s complete cycle of birth, decay, death, and birth. Common access as well as non-harming freedom of expression is essential.
We are in process of building a separate website devoted to registering, tracking, and networking for Regenerative Memorials. In the meantime, please be in touch for more information if you wish to establish and/or dedicate a Regenerative Memorial or support this work otherwise.
Species memorials have been the ground of Extinction Witness from the beginning when the project was seeded at the close of 2011 with intent to share a multimedia performance memorial to cetaceans produced by writer and creative director Megan Hollingsworth. Impulse to promote The Whale Memorial Dance online evolved quickly into Extinction Witness as Megan discovered other memorials to extinct and endangered species along with a flood of dialogue and activity in response to mass species extinction.
Following Megan’s grief response to the 1850’s cutting of a giant sequoia called ‘Discovery Tree’, much of 2013 was spent exploring possibilities for establishing a more reverent presence and approach to ‘Discovery Tree’ and the entirety of the North Grove of Calaveras Big Trees State Park, California. Upon hearing that pollinators are in focus for 2017 Lost Species Day, Megan’s growing interest and sense of urgency to support on-the-ground, universally beneficent regeneration projects sparked a vision for the Regenerative Memorials. This vision coalesced when a series of synchronicities connected Pollinator Posse and Extinction Witness early November 2017.
Cardinal Regenerative Memorial: Lu’s Memorial Pollinator Garden, Lake Merritt Wildlife Refuge, Oakland, CA, Lost Species Day, November 30th, 2017
Lu’s Memorial Pollinator Garden in Lake Merritt Wildlife Refuge, Oakland, California is officially recognized as the cardinal Regenerative Memorial with intent to carry Lucille Rocha’s legacy in living memorials worldwide. Lu’s Memorial Pollinator Garden, was established by Pollinator Posse director Tora Rocha at Lake Merritt, Oakland California to honor the memory of her mother Lucille Rocha upon Lucille’s request for a living memorial. The intent of Lu’s Memorial Pollinator Garden and all the work of Pollinator Posse is to presence community members whose voices go unrecognized and, thus, whose needs go readily unmet.
Lucille’s Regenerative Memorials also carry the legacy of Megan’s teacher Lucille Bertuccio, also a mother, who through an elective course in Ecohumanism at Indiana University first opened Megan’s mind to the deeper story and cost of materialism, as well worm composting! Lucille Bertuccio was herself devoted to the smallest, more often than not, unseen, unheard, and vastly under-appreciated community members.
The dedication of the cardinal Lucille’s Regenerative Memorial and Regenerative Memorials ongoing are a cooperative effort of Pollinator Posse and Extinction Witness aligned with Lost Species Day, November 30th - a global movement honoring extinct species while supporting endangered species to remain and thrive.
Honoring Birth Above All Feats and Sacrifices
Whereas Lake Merritt is the United States’ first official wildlife refuge, the 1854 stripping of “Mother of the Forest” in Calaveras spurred the formation of U.S. National Parks. And, we keep in mind that of two million whales killed between 1920 and 1970 nearly half of the females were carrying an unborn whale, while today sea lion mothers are failing to feed their babes, wolf and grizzly mothers are threatened in their dens, and albatross mothers feed their babes plastic. The list goes on. Nearly vanished is the quality of honoring and respecting mothers for their most necessary nurturing habits.
So, we begin in the gardens and in the groves remembering to honor birth before, above, below, through, and beyond death. Birth, not death, is the ultimate feat and sacrifice to be regarded, because to give birth is to die to the separate ego and to bear someone who will eventually die. There is no greater act of faith, humility, and surrender than to bring forth and love with all of oneself the fleeting glimpse of that which eventually passes as part of life’s ongoing.
Calaveras North Grove is high on the wish list for designation as a Regenerative Memorial that mother trees may be properly honored, known, and respected.
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