Category: Uncategorized


Stand and be counted, o people of peace
Where love has been sown shall our harvest increase
Our hues, our religions, our tongues though diverse
Lend vibrant variety to our universe

People of peace, arise, arise!
Our future’s unfolding before our eyes
The choice we now face was never more clear
For our human race is to love instead of fear

-from ‘I Am a Seed of Peace’ by James Durst
© PhoeniXongs ASCAP

Wishing you peace, wherever you happen to be.


Let me make this short and sweet.
I don’t do Twitter. I don’t Tweet.
Said it once. Let me repeat:
I don’t do Twitter. I don’t Tweet.
Some may think me incomplete
That I don’t do Twitter & I don’t Tweet.
As it is I rarely leave my seat
Sometimes I forget to eat
Got websites, Facebook, emails to delete.
So I don’t do Twitter. I don’t Tweet.
Life’s already much too fleet
Gotta separate the chaff from wheat
So there it is, etched in concrete:
I. Don’t. Do. Twitter.
I. Don’t. Tweet.
-10 July 2013


– To the tune of ‘Little Boxes’ with apologies to Malvina Reynolds & Pete Seeger (6/26/13)

Little boxes in the beehive, little boxes filled with ticky tacky
Little boxes, bigger boxes, and more boxes all around
And the movers filled the boxes with the artifacts of our histories
The astonishing accumulation that, were it water, we’d have drowned

And the stuff lives in the living room and the bedroom and the dining room
The garage is overflowing with detritus from the past
There’s so little we can’t live without,
So we’re using this opportunity to divest, unload and discard
All the ticky tacky we’ve amassed

So as we dive in amongst the boxes, all the boxes filled with ticky tacky
Pray we aren’t lost in an avalanche made of cardboard sealed with tape
Send a search team or a Saint Bernard to save us from our lives of ticky tacky
Give us strength to become en-lightened and from the ticky tacky to escape

Newest Release: ‘MY COUNTRY IS THE WORLD’ “A beautiful CD”–Folk Roots Magazine

‘My Country is the World’ is the reprised, remixed & remastered collection I first released in 1997 after 2 years of recording in numerous studios from coast to coast. Having gathered songs virtually everywhere I’ve played in some 45 countries since 1965, it first featured songs in such unexpected tongues as Vietnamese, Icelandic, Turkish, Greek, Hebrew and Danish. With the addition of 6 BONUS TRACKS, the album now boasts 20 songs in 19 languages. In ’97 Folk Roots Magazine said: “The diversity is astonishing. Durst’s sense of arrangement ensures that the material is both smooth and coherent, and he is able to unite the wide spectrum of cultures he embraces. This is a beautiful CD.” It remains my favorite child. I hope you’ll invite her into your heart and your home. Although the official release date is Earth Day, copies are available right here, right now. ORDER NOW and Celebrate Earth Day every day!
Vaya con Cantos, James


ECONOMIC STIMULUS: First CD purchased is $15, then each additional CD is just $10 + FREE SHIPPING!

The Truth About Homo Sapiens (POEM)

More hunted than hunter
Not predator but prey
‘Twas cooperation
Kept carnivores at bay
Community not conflict
Says our DNA
It’s because we worked together
We’re still here today
-James Durst © 2009



Pirates have been popular
And vampires even more so
Combined they’d be (it seems to me)
A force to make the gore flow
Vampirates! Vampirates!
The next big thing you heard here first
Send the royalties to my mailbox
Make the check out to James Durst

© 2012 James Durst

HUE MANATEE’S QUEST: A Watery Musical Memoir

As told to JAMES DURST (Synopsis)

When our central character Hue Manatee is nearly dispatched by an angry boat propeller in the opening scene, the close call is witnessed by a passing itinerant musician, fiddler and singer Flickati Cricket. The two opposites find commonality in their mutual awareness of environmental degradation and somehow vaguely know that the responsibility lies with the Two-legged Ones. Rather than accept this condition as inevitable, the two set off in search of a solution, seeking the counsel of renowned teacher and change agent, Leon Chameleon. When they find Leon he is scurrying about getting his affairs in order. The two youngsters try to engage him in answering their questions, but he remains distracted and aloof until Hue mentions the “change” in their respective environments. Leon’s attention sharpens upon hearing mention of his favorite subject and he acknowledges the presence of the two. They soon learn that Leon is about to embark on a long and arduous journey to his ancestral homeland, the Galápagos. When the two younger ones protest the imminent loss of their new mentor, Leon invites them to join him in the hope of learning more about their questions. But before setting out Leon takes them to meet Shining Eagle, the shaman of the Northern Hemisphere Imáji Nation, to bless their journey. Shining Eagle gifts them with one of his own feathers to enable them to transcend gravity and speed them on their way.

En route to the Galápagos the three travelers meet and share songs and perils with a whale and a trio of dolphins, and are ultimately rescued on the back of Ella Condor, the medicine woman of the Southern Hemisphere Todos tribe, who delivers the three seekers to their final destination. Upon arriving on the rocky shores they’re welcomed by the well-known street corner vocal quintet, Acapellago. They sing together, after which Leon reveals that for him this has been a one-way trip, and he prepares to take the ultimate journey. Flickati realizes that her mission is to employ her music as a teaching medium, and Hue understands that his function is to “act locally” and return home to clean up his own backyard and hopefully, inspire his neighbors to do likewise. As the three are about to go their separate ways, Hue awakens from semi-consciousness with a bump on his forehead from the early morning boat propeller incident. Seeing only the faces of his concerned manatee family about him — no wise chameleon or rapscallion cricket, no eagle or condor spiritual leaders, no dolphins, whale or Galápagosian singers — Hue realizes that his colorful odyssey was all just a strange and beautiful dream from which he has awakened wiser and more determined than ever to make a difference in the life of his troubled planet.

Hue Manatee’s Quest is available as 1) a Screenplay, 2) a Stage Adaptation in several forms, 3) a Book Manuscript and 4) a CD: Songs from Hue Manatee’s Quest.
Contact James Durst:

Serene ‘RIPPLES of PEACE’ book added to Store – Check it out


111 Ways You Can Help Create Peace in the World
Edited and Compiled by Rae Thompson
With Photos by Mark Tucker
Foreword by Louise Diamond

RIPPLES OF PEACE is an exquisitely wrought collection of quotes, poems, aphorisms, exhortations and prayers from global peacemakers lovingly created by writer Rae Thompson and complemented with photos by this generation’s Ansel Adams, Mark Tucker. Should live on everyone’s coffee table or travel in one’s backpack for ready reference.

$17 includes US shipping (elsewhere please add $5)