The Toad, the Fly, and the Pond
A warm, summer morning enshrines a vastly unmarked trail of preserved land called Highland Lakes State Park. It once belonged Minisink ‘Indians’. All of the Delaware tribes lived in the vicinity of the Delaware River, from Kingston, N.Y., down to the State of Delaware. They spoke a dialect of the Algonquian language. The women wore knee-length dresses of buckskin and the men’s usually wore a breechcloth, buckskin leggings and moccasins. In the summer, they hunted and fished, and raised corn, beans, squash, and other native vegetables. The toads ate, swam, croaked and sang songs of nature’s harmonious dance with the Minisinks, near various streams and ponds, while children played in a beech and maple tree-filled forest. There were smiles shared, tears shed, pain felt and stories told. The toads ate alongside the Minisink tribe. Upon arrival, the Minisinks would be branded ‘Delaware Indians’ by English settlers.
To this day, children and adults alike, including myself, trek the various aquatic architectures of Highland Lakes State Park. However, after thorough mining, logging, and quarrying, the land would never be recognizable by the Minisinks. Neither would the people. Of course, this is a given due to the fact that the people who presided here are all dead, but also because the people who visit this site are mostly White.
What does it mean for a person to be designated as “foreign” by the color of their skin? Is this coded language for “All (race) look alike?” My answer is: it depends who you ask. A person wearing a beret in camo can be assumed to be a militant. A person in jeans can be assumed to not be from the 17th Century. A White person in the eyes of a Minisink tribesman will be seen as a foreigner. Mined hills under a bed of dried leaves on a Highland Lakes trail are a foreign invasion of familial comfort.
The image of a ransacked bedroom or kitchen comes to mind. Let’s say you went to sleep in your bedroom and woke up with your underwear drawer opened, panties, boxers, etc. spread out all over the floor. Your first question after experiencing a brief moment of sharp anxiety and confusion would be to ask “Who did this?”
Was it your mother? Was it your significant other? Was it the Minisink tribespeople, or was it White settlers?
The obvious answer is that it wasn’t you unless you know yourself to be a sleepwalkers. A more specific answer would be that a foreign entity, someone that isn’t you, touched your belongings without your consent. Analogous to the mystery of the ransacked bedroom , the Minisink did not sleepwalk through the genocide of their people, or the rape of their culture, land, and sustenance, so to speak.
Who can the Minisink blame? As for nonhumans, who can the toads blame for the loss of their land?
The toads, however, still reside in Highland Lakes State Park, croaking and singing. Whether they recognize the park is unbeknownst to me, but they do continue to snatch flies and survive. They continue to kill and eat, preserving the state of the ecosystem on this state-funded ‘preservation’, unlike White settlers, and their progony, do.
Among the plastic, rubber, and rust, one can visit Highland Lakes State Park and observe the interaction between Toad, Fly, and Pond. The Pond supplies both life and death to feed the Flies. The Flies multiply so that the Toad can eat. The Toad dies and the Pond digests both Toad and Fly to preserve this conversation between life and death. All this, without the Pond being mined or otherwise appropriated.
White settlers, like Toads, took what they found on this land. They multiplied, snatched land, and multiplied some more. The Minisinks, like flies, were picked off and devoured by the colony, and thus were incapable of keeping the Pond whole as a basin of life and death. The Pond would eventually become the Settlers’ life-giving source, enslaved and milked for all the minerals it was worth, just as the Minisink would be in mines, loggings and all.
Among the plastic, rubber, and rust that litter the park, one finds difference between Toads and White settlers: preservation of that which was pro-harmony.
That which derides the harmonious and ecological cycle of life and death, eventually finds its place in the cycle itself:
The Toads and the Flies, like the Settlers, have survived. But the Toads, unlike the Settlers, have given up their bodies to maintenance of The Pond.
Without Flies, the Pond is useless to the Toad. Without slaves, the Land is useless to Settlers. Without Flies and slaves, both the Toad and the Settler will be sacrificed to the Pond’s preservation of death and life.
And just as this cycle will be maintained by the resourceable yet unmovable landscape, so will it be universally.
At a time where the landscapes of various cultures are monetized and pillaged by the continuation of colonialization worldwide, we must not turn a blind eye to the coming dawn of reproach by the colonized.
We, the colonized, are currently a Pond to the Toads of settler-colonialism. We were once flies in the glimmering greed behind their eyes, and are now shed of international harmony that once befitted us. In your bellies, and out into the Pond. Settlers are left with barely a Fly to snatch and devour, and all that’s left is the volition we share as the colonized.
Yet even with our volition, we lay victim to appropriation. We, as a collective, may hold the balance between life and death at the hands of Whiteness within ourselves, but the longer we wait for a change, the more of a target we become.
The second difference between a settler and a Toad is a settlers ability to adapt, which White people have not due to the fact that they still thrive on the denial of genocide, and most of all latch onto eurocentric ideals and theory like a newborn to the teet, once called “White mother land radicals” by decolonizers Huey P. Newton and Eldridge Cleavet.
It must be said that a response to colonialism will not take on the mode of any eurocentric ideology by default. It may be inspired by an ideology bred of Settler thought, such as Marxism, but it will be further defined by a lack thereof, as a balance between colonized thought and a new, decolonized world.
It can thus be said that White Marxism, a Marxism defined by the White political philosopher Karl Marx, is the final, utmost stage of colonialism, in that it must be overcome and made to benefit us first and foremost. It must come from the most nutrient-rich location of the Pond, so we can thrive on our own off of our own sustenance. This trophic level of fertility location happens to be at the bottom.
It ought to be clear that we must work from the bottom up, because Marxism as practiced by Settlers, has proven to be the most finely-coded, polished, defensible means of continuing genocide, in that it is further enforced by the progeny of settlers.
Presently exemplified is Louise Rosealma, a White anarchist who wears dreadlocks in apparent practice of Jata/Buddhism. The Jat peoples are very a low caste population of practitioners of both Hinduism and Buddhism. Whether or not this is honest and true, she stands as a cultural aftereffect of settler-colonialism. Her presence, as she exists (White woman, radical Left), is also at the herald of White Marxism, her body and mind housing various appropriations of cultures only made possible through the subjugation of a peoples mined, logged, and quarried by the unflinching greed of Settlers. Their colonialism, tied in with Marxist thought brought over by those escaping only one aspect of colonialism: capitalism. And now she is using money she has earned from a wae between Nazis and Far-Right activists to further fund organizations regulated by the federal government of a nation built on genocide.
The cultural dialectic of this activity is not only extremely insulting to people of color, but is also simply unrecognizable from the genocide the subaltern of North America have been battling since settlers arrived ashore. Two fronts sit at the helm of this Leftist’s participation in white supremacy: Nazi and Anarchist. Nazis seek to destroy the subaltern and the White Marxist. The White Marxist, here, applies the petite bourgeoisie logic of providing monetary funding to a 503(c), whose c/o in New York City makes tens of thousands of dollars, and makes the claim that she is righteous becsuse she got punched in the face by a Neo-Nazi. Meanwhile, a Black man is stabbed and killed by a Neo-Nazi, and none of the money Louise is raising had gone to the man’s family or funeral. All this, while she wears cultural signifiers of the Jat peoples, which are also cultural signifiers of Black communities around the world. All this, while she sexualizes a movement for the freedom of the lives of the aforementioned subaltern. Black men have died for this. The Minisink have died for this. And none of their deaths were consensual.
Instead of mining through our labor, or logging through our culture, our colonizers must find themselves cornered by a lack of harmony. Their only choice will be but to succomb to a fate that will eventually will them with the formlessness we have been forced to endure.
For even if Settlers are now fashioning a pillaging as personal as dreadlocks, or as universally disparaging as capitalism, they will find themselves without a source of sustenance. It is time to give back, or harmony will take. And on that day, when the discordant Toads of our ecosystem find themselves starving on this Pond they have branded as Working Class or Colored Peoples, their fate will be completely left to our volition.