I was always attracted to the poems of Emily Dickinson. It started in the seventh grade with Mrs. Rice reading one of her poems that begins, “I’m nobody! Who are you?” I suppose as a pre-teen at the time, I was fascinated by someone actually admitting from the start that they were “nobody”. Perhaps a little simplistic thinking on my part at the time. But I became very motivated to delve into the meaning of her poems especially the more depressing and sometimes even darker ones. I read her biographies which always intrigued me. But don’t ask me why; they just did.
These days, I am somewhere in between feeling hopeful and depressed by all the madness that seems to be exhibited at all levels by so many of us. More maddening is that the paradoxes and ironies of the madness come from our so called leaders. I crave more thought provoking poems to help me understand and cope with it all. I read more about keeping faith and spirituality.
Here is a poem by Emily Dickinson I reread recently that seems to connect to what is happening right now. What do you think?
Our collective journey right now is a difficult one. Who do we believe? What are the hard truths we will have to face? Will we see more deaths because of the COVID-19 pandemic? Will our children safe in school? Will there be an effective and safe vaccine we can trust? Will our elections be tampered with by foreign enemies or even by our own home grown terrorists? Because chaos begets chaos and because hate begets hate and because uncertainty is a type of terrorism, we must unite to seek the truth. We cannot continue to allow anyone to divide us. We must unbury the American values we cherished so much. What happened to how we deplored big brother watching us, political coups, injustice, bigotry and leaders who lied to their people? Our country lived by values. We cherished our constitutional rights, our civil rights and liberties. What has happened to us? We were not perfect. But we knew about basic decency. We always knew what was the right thing to do for the good of us all. We the People must be the force of goodness, empathy, and compassion. We are all exhausted. We need positive energy to carry on our most valued right. The right to vote. These last few days I feel like I am in a labyrinth and here with the help of Pixabay I have tried to illustrate my poem.
These two great singers are among my very favorite singers. Listen and read the lyrics. They always bring me peace.
I pray you’ll be our eyes, And watch us where we go And help us to be wise, In times when we don’t know Let this be our prayer, When we lose our way Lead us to a place, Guide us with your grace To a place where we’ll be safe
La luce che tu dai (the light that you give) I pray we’ll find your light Nel cuore resterà (In my heart it will remain) And hold it in our hearts A ricordarci che (To remind us that) When stars go out each night L’eterna stella sei (You are the eternal star) Nella mia preghiera (In my prayers) Let this be our prayer Quanta fede c’è (How much faith there is) When shadows fill our day Lead us to a place Guide us with your grace Give us faith so we’ll be safe
Sognamo un mondo senza più violenza (We dream of a world with no more violence) Un mondo di giustizia e di speranza (A world of justice and hope) Ognuno dia la mano al suo vicino (Everyone lends a hand to their neighbour) Simbolo di pace e di fraternità (A symbol of peace and fraternity)
La forza che ci dai (The strength you give us) We ask that life be kind È il desiderio che (And the desire that) And watch us from above Ognuno trovi amor (Everyone will find love) We hope each soul will find Intorno e dentro a sè (Around and inside themselves) Another soul to love Let this be our prayer Let this be our prayer Just like every child Just like every child
Need to find a place, Guide us with your grace Give us faith so we’ll be safe E la fede che (And the faith that) Hai acceso in noi (You have ignited within us) Sento che ci salverá (I feel that it will save all of us)
I was inspired by this countdown clock that measures to the second how much longer it will be until election day. I wrote the following poem starting with a borrowed line from Destined 4 the Dub. I write found poems all the time and all it takes is reading a clever line from a fellow blogger. I want to create awareness and encourage people to read and listen as we move closer to election day. It is so important to keep informed and to be able to distinguish the truth and alternative facts.
I hope you enjoy this poem. Afterall, my goal is to inspire with my art and poetry. I have been enjoying the comments. Here is the found poem. I hope that one of you can give it a title. Please write your suggestions in the comments.
Carefully choose what you remember.
Let go of all the lies.
Allow the waves of change
to flow gracefully into your hearts.
We are the new dreamers.
However, the seeds were planted long ago.
Sow them gently;
So you hear their soothing mantra.
They create harmony for us;
all of us.
Know now the urgency of our oneness.
Our voices echo love and peace.
Do not forget to look at the view.
Nature always heals the soul.
Watch out for the rainbow;
it knows our destiny.
We will survive!
This too shall pass.
Attributions: Miriam Out and About – Destined 4 the dub
One years ago the 19th amendment empowered women with the right to vote. 2020 so far been a memorable year; it will definitely be remembered for many negatives but there are some positives we need to embrace.
My grandmother was barely 22 years old when the 19th came about. The incumbent president at the time was Woodrow Wilson, a leader of the Progressive Movement; he was the 28th President of the United States (1913-1921).
Warren G. Harding, a Republican, who won by a landslide victory in 1920, taking every state outside the South and dominating the popular vote. He became the 29th president.
I wish she were here to tell me who she voted for at the time and if she actually did get to vote. My great-grandmother was never able to vote. She had passed by the time the 19th had been enforced.
Today, we the women of this great country do have the right to vote and it is so important that we do so on November 3, 2020. We must do everything in our power to get out there and exercise our right to vote and not be fearful. Our vote will count and will be counted fairly. We must believe that our elections will not be tampered with. Our doubts began with the knowledge that foreign entities may try to sway people one way or another via social media. Reliable security sources have made clear interference of that kind will not happen again. So we cannot allow fear, and misinformation to come from any source.
Of course, I may be a tad bias but I believe women are intelligent, forceful and determined to make the world right for their offspring and loved ones in general. You could not intimidate my mother or grandmother. They kept informed. They read fervently and spoke up when they knew something was dramatically wrong. I know that many women are made of the same stuff.
I watched Michelle Obama speak at the National Democratic (unconventional) Convention which was done virtually because of the pandemic we are all struggling with these days. She was eloquent as usual but also spoke from her non-political heart. I heard the sincerity of a mother and patriot who loves her country. It was a love like this that fueled the Suffrage Movement. As my grandmother would say they had “fuego” (fire) in their hearts and clarity in their minds.
We must honor those women by doing what needs to be done. I know I will honor my great grandmother and all those before her who could not voice their opinion or check off a ballot box.
There is too much at stake. There is too much to accomplish. We have come a long way but so much more needs to be done to get the job done better. It is up to us. Who else can do three jobs at once? Who else has the know how to read people and know what is best for their children? The answer is We the Women of these United States of America. God bless America!
“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”
“The words above, thought to be the motto, are chiseled in gray granite over the entrance to the New York City Post Office on 8th Avenue and come from Book 8, Paragraph 98, of The Persian Wars by Herodotus.”
This is the motto or slogan and indeed the promise from the United States Postal Servicethat I counted on for so many years. During summer vacations I counted on their promise to deliver promptly the letters I’d write to my friends who went away to camp or to stay with their grandparents. I would be away part of the summer to visit my grandmother. I’d wait by the door for the mail carrier, (then called postman) to bring me letters from my dad who could not take off from work to be with us. Later, I’d wait for letters from my friends serving abroad during the Vietnam war. I couldn’t wait to get the pictures they would take especially of the celebrities showcased in the Bob Hope tours with the USO. Then, there was waiting for the acceptance letters from the dream college I had applied to. And of course, (I have kept them all until now) there were the love letters my husband would write to me with an occasional poem dedicated to me or to our love.
I am sure all of you can relate to these moments that were made possible because we had a reliable source. Namely the postal service. We could count on the promise that no matter what the mail would arrive. Of course, there were delays at times and return to sender mail even though you had written the correct address on the envelope. We have all had some of those experiences.
There has been so much to digest these days and nothing is as important as the devastation caused by this deadly and highly contagious virus that has invaded our country. But the possible threat proposed against our postal system is something we have to stop. Our democracy depends on our postal service. I do not understand how we can allow defunding or privatization of this precious service. The essential workers of this institution have been diligent to get us our medicines and other goods during the stay home mandate.
I remember one of my teachers introducing us to pen pal writing. I had a few pen pals that continued writing to me way beyond the elementary school years. The teacher wrote the postal service slogan on the board. She told us how important it was to have a postal service and explained the many ways that it helped people to stay connected.
I continue to write letters . Yes, I to friends and family even though it has kind of become a lost art and old fashion. I use email and text messaging but there is nothing like writing to a letter to a friend or family member and receiving one from them as well. My grand daughter started writing me letters during the pandemic. These letters made my day. They are my greatest treasure. She enclosed drawings and would tell us how much she missed us.
I know that this may sound over sentimental but a promise is a promise is what I believe firmly. The following is another inscription that sums it all:
Messenger of Sympathy and Love Servant of Parted Friends Consoler of the Lonely Bond of the Scattered Family Enlarger of the Common Life Carrier of News and Knowledge Instrument of Trade and Industry Promoter of Mutual Acquaintance Of Peace and of Goodwill Among Men and Nations.
Please do your part in helping to save our postal service. No matter what your political affiliation or philosophy, I am sure that you will want to think about what the threats being made implicate. Remember many people now rely on the postal service to survive. We must protect the legendary promise that was made to all of us, we the people. All it takes is a postcard or letter to your senator or congressman or woman to insist that they do something to fund the USPS.
The USPS traces its roots to 1775 during the Second Continental Congress, when Benjamin Franklin was appointed the first postmaster general. … It was elevated to a cabinet-level department in 1872, and was transformed by the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970 into the United States Postal Service as an independent agency.
In 1774, the British fired Franklin from his postmaster job because of his revolutionary activities. However, the following year, he was appointed postmaster general of the United Colonies by the Continental Congress. Franklin held the job until late in 1776, when he was sent to France as a diplomat. He left a vastly improved mail system, with routes from Florida to Maine and regular service between the colonies and Britain.
President George Washington appointed Samuel Osgood, a former Massachusetts congressman, as the first postmaster general of the American nation under the new U.S. constitution in 1789. At the time, there were approximately 75 post offices in the country.