"Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before."
--Audre Lorde
"Art is not a mirror held up to reality but a hammer with which to shape it."
--Bertolt Brecht
"Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground."

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"Your mission is to document and observe the world around you as if you’ve never seen it before. Take notes.  Collect things you find on your travels.  Document your findings.  Notice patterns. Copy.  Trace.  Focus on one thing at a time.  Record what you are drawn to."
                                                                                                      --Keri Smith


Meet Afghanistan's youngest female rapper, Sonita Alizadeh

Sonita ...brides for sale


The House that Herman

Herman's House:
The Film

-- Watch on Fandor


Videos, audios, etc.

Schubert Quintet in C, D 956 - 2. Adagio - Zagreb International Chamber Music Festival 2008

!!! The Voice Australia: Karise Eden sings It's A Man's World !!!
Best the voice Australia all of time Blind

Didgeridoo spirit of Arnhem land

Mary Oliver -- Listening to the World

The sexiest most amazing female voice ever in Britain's Got Talent 2013 - Alice Fredenham

Rumer Willis & Val Chmerkovskiy - ALL DANCES - DWTS 20

Beethoven - Moonlight Sonata (60 Minutes Version)

Best the voice Australia all of time Blind

Ballroom Dance Tube

Lucia Horan Dances 5Rhythms

White Wine In The Sun by Tim Minchin

Messin' With The Blues [live '74]

The Life and Times of Frida Kahlo - Documentary

Artist Mariam Ghani, Daughter of Afghan Pres., Takes on US Abuse from Gitmo to Bagram to US Prisons 081215

Artist Emily Jacir Brings the Palestinian Experience
to the Venice Biennale

Trading with the Enemy: Homing Pigeons with Cigars Challenge U.S. Embargo, Fly from Cuba to Florida 081215



Art - A Space for All


Elsa Gidlow - The Poetess of Druid Heights





Videos, audios, etc.

Thomas Berry recites nine of his poems

A Callarse - Pablo Neruda

Lords of BSV Extended Trailer

Andre Rieu & Carlos Buono - Tango Piazzolla Adios Nonino

Adrienne Maree Brown & Walidah Imarisha, co-editors of Octavia’s Brood - imagining creative possibilities for liberation 042015 - at 33:25
Growing Octavia’s Brood: The Science Fiction Social Justice Created

Wendell Berry Reads: The Contrariness of the Mad Farmer
Poem - Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Art Exhibit Recreates Tiny Cell Where the Late Herman Wallace Spent 42 Years in Solitary 041715
The House that Herman Built
"[This project] helps me to maintain what little sanity I have left, to maintain my humanity and dignity. It’s probably the best move that I’ve ever made in my life." –Herman Wallace

Dickipedia is The HuffPost Show's wiki of dicks. Our inaugural entry is Mitch McConnell 041015

Margaret A. Lindauer, art historian - The Art and Politics
of Frida Kahlo

Latino! Ana e Erick Berninzon al San Francisco Carnaval, 2009


"I’m a 48-year-old writer who can remember being a 10-year-old writer and who expects someday
to be an 80-year-old writer. I’m also comfortably asocial --a hermit in the middle of Los Angeles-- a pessimist if I’m not careful, a feminist, a Black, a former Baptist, an oil-and-water combination of ambition, laziness, insecurity, certainty, and drives."

                                                                                        -- Octavia Butler


Octavia Butler: Science Future, Science Fiction

Octavia Butler on Charlie Rose- Part 1/2 - Part 2






La Santa Cecilia,
Mexican-American band

La Santa Cecilia - Strawberry Fields Forever

Luscious lead singer: “La Marisoul” Hernandez


"I think writers use absolutely everything that happens to us, and surely if I had had a different sort of childhood and still come out a writer, I’d be a different kind of writer. It’s on a par with, but different from, the fact that I had four brothers who were born and died before I was born. Some of them didn’t come to term, some of them did come to term and then died. But my mother couldn’t carry a child to term, for the most part something went wrong. If they had lived, I would be a very different person. So, anything that happens in your life that is important, if it didn’t happen you would be someone different."
                                                                                                                     -- Octavia Butler


Prototype | Channel 4

Prototype: The Making Of | Channel 4


‘Bionic pop star’ Viktoria Modesta invades X Factor final

Viktoria Modesta, the world's first amputee pop star : ‘If you don’t fit in, then don’t fit in.’


"When I was in college, I began Kindred, and that was the first (novel) that I began, knowing what I wanted to do. The others, I was really too young to think about them in terms of ‘What do you have to say in this novel?’ I just knew there were stories I wanted to tell. But when I did Kindred, I really had had this experience in college that I talk about all the time, of this Black guy saying, ‘I wish I could kill all these old Black people that have been holding us back for so long, but I can’t because I have to start with my own parents.’ That was a friend of mine. And I realized that, even though he knew a lot more than I did about Black history, it was all cerebral. He wasn’t feeling any of it. He was the kind that would have killed and died, as opposed to surviving and hanging on and hoping and working for change. And I thought about my mother, because she used to take me to work with her when she couldn’t get a baby sitter and I was too young to be left alone, and I saw her going in the back door, and I saw people saying things to her that she didn’t like but couldn’t respond to. I heard people say in her hearing, ‘Well, I don’t really like colored people.’ And she kept working, and she put me through school, she bought her house – all the stuff she did. I realized that he didn’t understand what heroism was. That’s what I want to write about: when you are aware of what it means to be an adult and what choices you have to make, the fact that maybe you’re afraid, but you still have to act."
                                                                                                              -- Octavia Butler

Mary Gow
Mary Gow's Galleries

Katia Almeida

Javier Limon Music

Ali Akhbar College
of Music

Bay Area Flamenco

Poems - Kim Rosen

Radio Ambulante



Videos, audios, etc.

Play Like A Lion
Independent film that was released in 2011 about the life and music
of the late legendary Sarode Maestro Ali Akbar Khan

Ra Paulette has been digging caves by hand for 20 years.
His magnum opus is a sprawling wonder of land art

The Lathe of Heaven PBS version 1980
Bill Moyers interview with Ursula K. LeGuin about "Lathe of Heaven"

Matt Cardle First time ever saw your face

Lady Gaga & Tony Bennett – Cheek to Cheek Full Album
Tony Bennett, Lady Gaga - But Beautiful (Studio Video)
Tony Bennett, Lady Gaga - Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)

Theo Jansen's STRANDBEEST    Utterly magical!!!

Shirley Horn - "If You Love Me"

John Trudell Carry the Stone

3 Gymnopédies, 6 Gnossiennes -D

Ageless Closets: My Way or the Highway: Betsey Johnson

Kate Bush - Efteling

Greg Pritchard Countertenor Sings Nessun Dorma
Britain's Got Talent 2009 [HQ]

The best X Factor audition ever innocent girl
(Grenade - Fatin Shidqia Lubis)

Abelardo Vasquez - El rio de las cosas Mesmerizingly exquisite music...

Bread and Puppet Theater Founder Peter Schumann on 50 Years of Art and Resistance 122613




David Glick - It's Crying Time

In the Company of Wolves

Intelligent Video: The Top Cultural & Educational Video Sites

Lada Gaga: The Visionary Rebirth of the Divine Mother Monster

David Glick- Praise

Rumi - The Guest House

David Whyte - The Opening of Eyes

Kim Rosen and Jami Sieber - Only Breath

Sharon Olds: Late Poem to My Father

"Poetry is often the art of overhearing yourself say things you didn’t know you knew. It is a learned skill to force yourself to articulate your life, your present world or your possibilities for the future."
                                                                                        -- David Whyte


Bagobo Tribal Woman - image by Jojie Alcantara

Scene Stealer
taking a shot at life…aiming to inspire



Open Culture


The Ecstatic Faith
of Rumi

Barefoot Artists

Billionaires for Bush

Poets against the War



Videos, audios, etc.

Here at the End of the World by David Rovics

Stand By Me | Playing For Change | Song Around the World

Attraction Semi Final [HD] - Britain's Got Talent 2013
Attraction (Shadow Theatre Group) 1st Audition Britain's Got Talent

Power Animals & Native Nights - Native American Meditation Music

Somewhere Over the Rainbow 2011 - Israel "IZ" Kamakawiwo'ole

George Helm What's the name of this Hawaiian song?

Def Poetry: Daniel Beaty - Knock Knock (Official Video)

Duo MainTenanT - Benissimo
Dancers: Ludivine Furnon and Nicolas Besnard

Proud to be Punjabi - Part -1

Jai Uttal & Ben Leinbach - Shyama Bolo (Bhakti Bazaar)

Jill Foto

Anita Tijoux - Desclasificado
Ana Tijoux - Viva la resistencia! // eNtR meets

"Hero of War" – Rise Against Song Captures Iraq War Veteran’s Tragic Experience 052713

Russian Ballet Dancers



It's crying time
Malcolm's gone.
Malcolm, God's black revolutionary voice
words fierce as thunder
sharp as a knife
cutting and slashing lightening like
all the dirty ugly lies
America has ever told about itself.
Standing tall, proud and handsome
with that wondrous infectious smile
that broadcast to anyone
with eyes to see
and ears to hear
just how much he loved his people
the fierce tender love so deep
so deep
he was willing to die for their freedom.
Malcolm forever growing and learning
his brilliant mind
forever transforming himself
as he journeyed
inch by inch and mile by mile
from his beloved Harlem
to Africa and Mecca
shedding his well-earned bitterness
cashing it in
for a vision of universal brotherhood
Black, White, Yellow, Red and Brown.
Malcolm, militant to the end
he who would demand
yes demand
never beg or plead
and who promised to struggle on
heroically against all odds
until victory was won.
His journey too short
cut down by assassins
too tone deaf
to hear the fierce love for humanity
in his fiery words.
It's crying time America
It's crying time.


David Glick; January 10, 2014





Videos, audios, etc.

Never will I Marry - Ina Hoem vocal - Kroks JazzCafe Trondheim 2011

Now I Become Myself - May Sarton

Chris Hadfield first in-space viral music video star with 'Space Oddity'

Breaking Surface - Mark Nepo

Paris - Sheep to the Slaughter

Night-blooming cereus cactus flower time-lapse

The Routes of Rhythm 5 of 12 - Harry Belafonte narrating

Laurel & Hardy Youtube mix

Gouttes de pluie - Drops of rain

Eve Ensler - “You Tell Me How To Be a Girl in 2010?
"I am an Emotional Creature"
Audios from OnPoint

Aimee Mullins: It's not fair having 12 pairs of legs

2012 Kennedy Center Honors: Salute to Buddy Guy 122612

Joe Bonamassa with Beth Hart - I'll Take Care of You 120511
Beth Hart - Setting Me Free (Live)
Beth Hart - Mama (Live at Paradiso)
Beth Hart - Sister Heroine (Rockpalast)
Beth Hart - Interview - 60Minuten Berlin 2010

Teachings of the Tree People - Bruce Miller, Skokomish Tribal Leader

Ludovico Einaudi - Ritornare

Jon Fromer - Gonna Take Us All

Rhema Marvanne - O Holy Night - Incredible child singer 7 yrs old
Rhema Marvanne - on ABC's 20/20
Just As I Am - Rhema - listen to the high note at 2:35 min...shocking

Chet Baker - A Taste of Honey

"I have a huge and savage conscience that won't let me get away with things."
                                                                                        -- Octavia Butler






Joyce Carol Oates on her new novels “The Accursed” and “Daddy Love” 032513
The Accursed,” an historical work set in the Gilded Age at the dawn of the twentieth century, and “Daddy Love,” a thriller that looks at oppression, bigotry, and the notion of young people as a symbol of hope.


"The opportunity might not be granted me again, I thought, to create a highly complex structure in which individual novels (themselves complex in design, made up of 'books') functioned as chapters or units in an immense design: America as viewed through the prismatic lens of its most popular genres."
—Joyce Carol Oates, 1985



John Steinbeck's Six Tips for the Aspiring Writer and his Nobel Prize Speech 022712

Langston Hughes - Let America Be America Again

Mark Twain's "The War Prayer" in a nutshell

Bob Dylan - Masters of War

David Glick - Ode to Dubya

Judith Hill - Wage Peace

Denise Levertov - Making Peace

David Glick - Collateral Damage

Brandon Bauer - War is not the answer


Dance by Shiloh McCloud, text by Alice Walker



If I die, survive me with such sheer force
Pablo Neruda
(tranlsated from Spanish)

If I die, survive me with such sheer force
that you waken the furies of the pallid and the cold,
from south to south lift your indelible eyes,
from sun to sun dream through your singing mouth.
I don't want your laughter or your steps to waver,
I don't want my heritage of joy to die.
Don't call up my person. I am absent.
Live in my absence as if in a house.
Absence is a house so vast
that inside you will pass through its walls
and hang pictures on the air
Absence is a house so transparent
that I, lifeless, will see you, living,
and if you suffer, my love, I will die again.



Dreaming Tree - Stacey Robyn








Women through the Ages

Almuerzo con Dios

Van Gogh Song

Dali Loco

Oud Solo

Life of Flowers

Puentes - Bridges

A Store Front in Berlin



Beings of Light - Annick Baud


I said to my soul, be still, and wait without hope
For hope would be hope for the wrong thing; wait without love,
For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith
But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.
Wait without thought, for you are not ready for thought:
So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing

                                                      T. S. Eliot, Excerpt from "Four Quartets"






Andrew De Leon, Austin Auditions ~ America's Got Talent 2012

So You Think You Can Dance - Hampton "The Exorcist" Williams

The Timbuktu diva Khaira Arby : desert blues
Khaira Arby

Diego Del Gastor | Flamenco Legend
Diego - La Fernanda
Belén Maya & Olga Pericet - 'Bailes alegres para personas tristes'

Moscow Puttin' on the Ritz

Grupo Afro Boriqua, Director William Cepeda
My Space Radio

Ludivine Furnon et Nicolas Besnard - Most Romantic...

Rosario Flores y Diego el Cigala
Rosario - Al son del Tambor

Emotional Music Goddness Touch -- Goddness of Many Faces

Etta James - At Last
Christina Aguilera At Etta James Funeral

Dancing Without Borders flash mob - Choreography

OCCUPY WITH ALOHA: Makana at the APEC Dinner, Hawaii

The Messengers Event - Spring of 2012
The Messengers Event

Occupy Wall Street Protest Song


Tango Fire -- La Cumparsita



Exquisite Images -
Carlos Alberto Bau

Fotos Premio Pulitzer

Lost - David Wagoner

Fractals with Chi Mai (Ennio Morricone)



Slow, sweet and hot 070500
San Francisco's Argentine Tango


Bi Kidude of Zanzibar

Shailja Patel ShiftedFocus KSW - homage to Bi Kidude
As Old As My Tongue: the Myth and Life of Bi Kidude


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.

"The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."

                                                                                                                            -- Theodore Roosevelt




Linoleum cut  by Brandon Bauer

Brandon Bauer












Bob Dylan:   
Masters of War

Come you masters of war
You that build all the guns
You that build the death planes
You that build the big bombs
You that hide behind walls
You that hide behind desks
I just want you to know
I can see through your masks

You that never done nothin'
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it's your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly

Like Judas of old
You lie and deceive
A world war can be won
You want me to believe
But I see through your eyes
And I see through your brain
Like I see through the water
That runs down my drain

You fasten the triggers
For the others to fire
Then you set back and watch
When the death count gets higher
You hide in your mansion
As young people's blood
Flows out of their bodies
And is buried in the mud

You've thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain't worth the blood
That runs in your veins

How much do I know
To talk out of turn
You might say that I'm young
You might say I'm unlearned
But there's one thing I know
Though I'm younger than you
Even Jesus would never
Forgive what you do

Let me ask you one question
Is your money that good
Will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul

And I hope that you die
And your death'll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And I'll watch while you're lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I'll stand o'er your grave
'Til I'm sure that you're dead


“Higher Ground” is a song that speaks of the perseverance
it takes to reach the higher consciousness

British Rocker Billy Bragg on Labor Strikes and Songs, Activism, and the Murdoch Hacking Scandal
Billy Bragg

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic

Voces Contra El Poder: Mas Alla De La Oscuridad (Obra)

Kim Silverman, Phd - Making Magic Meaningful

El Corazon del Tango - Natalia & Francisco

Chooka Parker -- Australia's Got Talent Encore

Tango - Reliquia Portenas - Enrique y Guillermo de Fazio

Janet Echelman - Taking imagination seriously
1.26 Denver, Colorado

Virtual Tour - La Casa de Frida Kahlo

The Concert Experience - North Indian Classical Music

Mother India Calling You Home - Mera Desh Mera Swadesh

Ani Choying Drolma - Invocation

Buddhist Nun Shares The Sound Of Music

Sout Al Horeya - Amir Eid - Hany Adel - Hawary on Guitar
& Sherif on Keyboards



~ David Glick

Praise be the drum, the flute and the didgerydoo
the sax, the trumpet, and the oboe too.
Feel the beat of the drum
Babba bum babba bum
feel the rhythm and rum
bidda bum bum bum.
Let it course through your body
‘til you sway and dance
let yourself move
give yourself a chance.

Open your heart to this life you’re living
in this scheme of things
there’s both receiving and giving.
Let gratitude, wonder, song and praise
be your guides throughout all your days.
Praise be the sun, the moon, the stars and you
the babies, doggies, and kitties too.
Praise the mountains and valleys
the flowers and trees
the thunder of the rain and the ocean breeze.
Praise winter, spring, summer and fall
praise mother earth who birthed us all.

All praise to the farmworkers laboring hot in the sun
and those who chronicle the work they’ve done.
Praise be Fannie Lou Hammer and Dorothy Day
whose courage and compassion showed us the way.
Thanks be to Jesus so loving and kind
and hats off to the wisdom of the Buddha mind.
Here’s to Caesar Chavez, Martin, Malcom, and Marx
both Karl and Groucho and bagels and lox.

Here’s to the wheelers and dealers
the healers and feelers
the poets and hipsters
the pranksters and tricksters.
Here’s to the straight shooters and the zoot suiters
the hip hoppers and dope poppers
to kids who color outside the lines
and don’t sit quiet while reciting their lines.
Here’s to the rulemakers and the rulebreakers
to square pegs that don’t fit in round holes
whatsoever their dreams whatsoever their goals.

Praise be to what's down and deep
to what makes you laugh and makes you weep.
Hear the beat of life’s drum
bubba bum bubba bum
feel the rhythm and the rum
bidda bum bum bum.

Here’s to barbecue ribs sliding nice off the bone
and water melon picnics and an ice cream cone.
All praise to the moms from whose womb we all came
no matter our race no matter our game
and to all those dads who work the livelong day
and raise their kids and never wander or stray.
Praise be the ordinary hidden deep in the divine
transforming the everyday into the sublime.

Praise be the was you was and the is you is
no matter your story no matter your biz.
Here’s to slave songs and work songs
folk songs and hope songs
to blues and jazz and that gospel shout
bad enough to drive the demons out.
Here’s to the rainbow God sent after the rain
that lightens our load and lessens our pain





David Glick

Iran (is not the problem)

Poets use compassionate language to explore conflict between Israel and Palestine 030310

Ode to Dubya

Collateral Damage

David Glick -- The Healthcare Blues






Hats off to the left brainers and right brainers
the no-brainers and the mind trainers
to long rambling conversations about God and man
that circle back to where they first began.
Here’s to the heartbreakers and love makers
the peace makers and world shakers
to those that say no
and those that go along with the flow.

Here’s to chanting and wailing
trying and failing
to those who get up after being knocked to the ground
ready to throw down for another round.
Here’s to the doubters and believers
the slouchers and achievers
the youngsters so impatient to change the world
and the elders who remember all the banners they unfurled.

It’s a crazy-quilt story this human life
filled with danger, opportunity, and filled with spice
there’s no getting off
and nowhere to hide
so you might just as well enjoy the ride.

© March 2, 2010          







When the moon crests the hills
giving each tree a black pool shadow,
the wolves wade in the forest,
wet themselves in the darkness,
shake it from their fur.

In clearings of light,
their eyes are stars,
their teeth comets,
their tails galaxies,
they are constellations of the night.
They roam the universe.

They run as Diana's companions,
laugh as her silver arrows
and their iron teeth
harvest the hunt's bounty.
They hide in her moon,
and cloud around her with breath.

They are brave of soul,
clear of eye and mind.
They are strong of jaw.
They are loyal and kind.
They are keen to scent.

Quick to 'fend their kin',
they are hot of blood,
they are slow to sin.
Grey, brown, white, black, blonde,
ear, tail, paw, claw, and tongue.

They play as a pack,
and they melt together
so that one is part of all
and all become one.
They prance through the forest.

They track through the sky.
They are noble in friendship,
and single in thought.
I join them in flight.
I run in the company of wolves!

BY: Wolfbard (D. J. Sylvis)

BTW, There is no record of
human death by a healthy wolf
in modern records!




Ode to Dubya

by David Glick

This poem was written in the belly of the beast,
dedicated to those on the margins, those who have the least.
I didn't outsource a single word or rhyme,
as one might expect in this crazy profit-driven time.

No foreign labor was employed,
no third world economy destroyed.
All words constructed here at home,
lest American capital abroad should roam.

There was no Mexican or Haitian exploitation,
'cause I was content to simply use my own imagination.
An American-made poem through and through,
revealing capitalism's cruelty so undeniably true.

Shopping malls, urban sprawl, reality TV,
the pale lifeless culture of American democracy.
People driving Hummers while soldiers die for oil,
cause me to rant and rave and make my blood boil.

The rich getting richer day by day,
while workers labor for declining pay.
Corporations metastasize, enlarging their share,
while workers struggle just to keep their health care.

Homeless people begging in the street,
hungry for a job and something to eat.
Disposable people in a heartless nation,
might someday lead to a tragic conflagration.

Driving while black is a serious crime,
but crooked CEOs never seem to do time.
And what sense does it make to cut funds for family planning,
while railing against abortions and calling for their banning?

People marching worldwide demanding their say,
so we'd best get to steppin' or there's gonna be hell to pay.
The job of corporate media is to ignore and conceal,
but we all know what's going on, we all know what's real.

Our President wears cowboy boots and thinks he's cool,
but this macho wannabe is a dangerous fool.
He's terrified of that jive 9/11 Commission,
fearful they might stumble upon a hint of suspicion.

Now Dick Clarke was angry and laid it out,
causing George Dubya to fuss and shout.
So the Prez told Condi go and testify,
but be damn sure to filibuster, obfuscate and mystify.

But when the Prez sat down to chat with the Commission,
he had Cheney by his side to ensure the truth's omission.
No recordings were allowed, no notes could be taken,
lest the nation's trust in Dubya would be shaken.

Invading Iraq for oil and empire,
any fool could have told you was sure to backfire.
It was neo-con madness of the highest measure,
driven by their lust for power and treasure.

Bush believes he's waging a messianic crusade,
which he thought would be greeted by cheers and a parade.
His reckless Middle East policy foments rage against the West,
from which I fear long memories will grant us little rest.

These are frightening times and that's for sure,
there's only one remedy, only one cure.
Ain’t no time for fussing and crying,
'cause we got that sick mother up there lying.

Mini nukes and depleted uranium,
must be something loose in his cranium.
Disposable soldiers and children dying,
can't he hear Mother Earth is crying.

He doesn't give a damn about global warming,
even though the climate it is deforming.
And as for the International Criminal Court,
he was so eager to abort.

"No Child Left Behind" sounded good on paper,
but it was just another clever White House caper.
And instead of allocating money for the AIDS pandemic,
cutting taxes for the rich was simplyacademic.

For Bush salvation comes through Christ alone,
so how explain his love affair with Ariel Sharon?
Their unlikely friendship couldn't be stranger,
but the hatred each has wrought has put the world in danger.

Dubya's lies and hypocrisy know no shame,
but his arrogant religion he's quick to proclaim.
Talk of the rapture and Armageddon,
scares me witless 'cause I know where we're headin'.

He talks with the assurance of God in heaven,
but what about his role in 9/11?
He trashed our Bill of Rights and our Constitution,
so we'd best get down and figure a solution.

Compassionate conservatism--a bold-faced lie,
so what if the poor have to grovel, starve and die.
Talking democracy while stealing an election,
we need a new president and a new direction.

©May 24, 2004                 


Collateral Damage

by David Glick

     What does it take to stop the madness of war?
Can't you see that I am not collateral damage?
You have emptied words of their meaning.
You have murdered language,
corrupted its use.
You have destroyed the fragile bridge
that helps us feel the pain of one another.

     In your arsenal of weapons of mass destruction,
words are the most insidious weapon of all.
You use words to mystify.
You would have the world believe there can be war without death,
with no shattered limbs or scattered families,
with no burnt flesh
or viscera protruding rudely from gaping holes,
or terrified children piercing the night air with their screams
as mothers helplessly cradle their trembling bodies.

     If you dared come out from behind that wall,
from behind that thin tissue of lies you have erected
that hides my humanity from you and your cruelty from yourself,
if you dared meet me out beyond that place
where there is no "other",
where flesh is one flesh and blood is one blood,
where all mothers worry about their children
and fathers wish for them a secure and happy life...
perhaps then things could be different.

     I am swarthy, my skin baked dark by the desert sun.
The lilting music that sways my body is exotic to your ears.
Imprisoned in the comfortable security of your sanitized life,
I seem foreign, dangerous, murderous;
unpredictable, unruly, uncivilized.
But I am not Saddam Hussein.
And I am not collateral damage.
I am a dewy newborn,
a loving mother,
a struggling father,
a doting grandparent.
Like you I laugh and cry and dream and love and hate.

     In a fiery orgy of high-tech slaughter,
You drop bombs and fire missiles
from the smug safety of your death machines.
We die and our mutilated bodies litter the landscape
while you sleep soundly,
unperturbed by the carnage,
unmindful you have reduced the cradle of civilization
to a heap of rubble and ash.

     We are caught in a vice not of our making.
We live under the boot of a ruthless dictator
who dwells in opulence in his shameless palaces.
Yet it is we who suffer the cruel fate of the heartless sanctions
imposed on us by an indifferent world for his reckless crimes.
Disease and hunger stalk our once proud land.
Poverty has reduced teachers to beggars.
Depleted uranium lies in wait,
a silent predator spreading cancer and grotesque deformities.

     And now, resigned yet defiant,
we once again await the thunder of your missiles.
Where can we hide from the bloodlust of our arrogant warmonger?
Smug and bedecked in self-righteousness,
he mocks us with his sneering smile
and his promises to liberate us from our cruel lives,
as if we are too dull-witted to pierce his lies and hypocrisy
and not notice his ravenous appetite
for the damnable treasure that lies beneath our sands
and his desire to stand astride the world in imperial majesty.

I'd rather your care than your horrifying bombs,
your food than your screaching missiles,
your medicine than your rumbling tanks.
But more than that I yearn for your respect.
For I am not Saddam Hussein.
And I am not collateral damage.

     You incinerated me at Amariyah.
You slaughtered me in the desert and buried me alive.
You incited me to revolt and betrayed me.
Yet I do not hate you.
I pity you your blindness,
the womb from which your brutishness comes.

     All I ask is that you see me.
That you risk stepping from behind the wall that separates us
and meet me in that place beyond what you think is possible.
That you look deeply into my eyes.
For I am not Saddam Hussein.
And Iam not collateral damage.
I am arms and legs and a beating heart.
I am a living breathing soul.
I am just like you --no more, but certainly no less.

©March 2, 2003                  


           Henri Rousseau - Sleeping Gypsy



Late Poem to My Father

by Sharon Olds

Suddenly I thought of you
as a child in that house, the unlit rooms
and the hot fireplace with the man in front of it,
silent. You moved through the heavy air
in your physical beauty, a boy of seven,
helpless, smart, there were things the man
did near you, and he was your father,
the mold by which you were made. Down in the
cellar, the barrels of sweet apples,
picked at their peak from the tree, rotted and
rotted, and past the cellar door
the creek ran and ran, and something was
not given to you, or something was
taken from you that you were born with, so that
even at 30 and 40 you set the
oily medicine to your lips
every night, the poison to help you
drop down unconscious. I always thought the
point was what you did to us
as a grown man, but then I remembered that
child being formed in front of the fire, the
tiny bones inside his soul
twisted in greenstick fractures, the small
tendons that hold the heart in place
snapped. And what they did to you
you did not do to me. When I love you now,
I like to think I am giving my love
Directly to that boy in the fiery room,

As if it could reach him in time.



The Guest House

~ Rumi


This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.



Let America Be America Again

Langston Hughes

Let America be America again.
Let it be the dream it used to be.
Let it be the pioneer on the plain
Seeking a home where he himself is free.

(America never was America to me.)

Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed--
Let it be that great strong land of love
Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme
That any man be crushed by one above.

(It never was America to me.)

O, let my land be a land where Liberty
Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath,
But opportunity is real, and life is free,
Equality is in the air we breathe.

(There's never been equality for me,
Nor freedom in this "homeland of the free.")

Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark?
And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?

I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart,
I am the Negro bearing slavery's scars.
I am the red man driven from the land,
I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek--
And finding only the same old stupid plan
Of dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak.

I am the young man, full of strength and hope,
Tangled in that ancient endless chain
Of profit, power, gain, of grab the land!
Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need!
Of work the men! Of take the pay!
Of owning everything for one's own greed!

I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil.
I am the worker sold to the machine.
I am the Negro, servant to you all.
I am the people, humble, hungry, mean--
Hungry yet today despite the dream.
Beaten yet today--O, Pioneers!
I am the man who never got ahead,
The poorest worker bartered through the years.

Yet I'm the one who dreamt our basic dream
In the Old World while still a serf of kings,
Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true,
That even yet its mighty daring sings
In every brick and stone, in every furrow turned
That's made America the land it has become.
O, I'm the man who sailed those early seas
In search of what I meant to be my home--
For I'm the one who left dark Ireland's shore,
And Poland's plain, and England's grassy lea,
And torn from Black Africa's strand I came
To build a "homeland of the free."

The free?

Who said the free? Not me?
Surely not me? The millions on relief today?
The millions shot down when we strike?
The millions who have nothing for our pay?
For all the dreams we've dreamed
And all the songs we've sung
And all the hopes we've held
And all the flags we've hung,
The millions who have nothing for our pay--
Except the dream that's almost dead today.

O, let America be America again--
The land that never has been yet--
And yet must be--the land where every man is free.
The land that's mine--the poor man's, Indian's, Negro's, ME--
Who made America,
Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain,
Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain,
Must bring back our mighty dream again.

Sure, call me any ugly name you choose--
The steel of freedom does not stain.
From those who live like leeches on the people's lives,
We must take back our land again,

O, yes,
I say it plain,
America never was America to me,
And yet I swear this oath--
America will be!

Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death,
The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies,
We, the people, must redeem
The land, the mines, the plants, the rivers.
The mountains and the endless plain--
All, all the stretch of these great green states--
And make America again!


From The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes,
published by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
Copyright (c) 1994 the Estate of Langston Hughes.


Mark Twain's "The War Prayer" in a nutshell

Our country was at war, flags were flying and patriotism was at a fever pitch. Pastors were preaching devotion to flag and country and those voicing disapproval or casting doubts were called traitors and silenced.

At one particular service an old man with long white hair and a robe entered the church and moved up the aisle. As the minister was asking God to help the soldiers crush the enemy and bring our country honor and glory, the stranger climbed the stairs, touched the pastor's arm and motioned for him to step aside.

He then began to speak, saying he had a message from God. He wanted everyone to know that God heard their prayer and was willing to grant it if they were willing to listen to the unspoken part of their prayer. When they prayed for victory they were also praying for the unmentioned results that would follow it. He went on to say that this is what they were also praying for:
-The enemy would be torn to shreds with our shells
-Their fields would be covered with their dead
-Our guns' sounds would drown out the cries of their wounded
-Their homes would be destroyed by fire
-Their innocent widows would have their hearts broken
-The women and children would be homeless
-People's lives would be destroyed
-Refugees would have no food, no clothing and nowhere to go

Then he told them that if they still wanted their "victory" God was waiting for their answer. The congregation decided that the stranger was a "lunatic" because he made no sense and the service ended.

Mark Twain's "The War Prayer"
Put into my own words: Lynda Ellis, Newbury Park, CA



Making Peace

by Denise Levertov

A voice from the dark called out,
"The poets must give us
imagination of peace, to oust the intense, familiar
imagination of disaster. Peace, not only
the absence of war."

But peace, like a poem,
is not there ahead of itself,
can't be imagined before it is made,
can't be known except
in the words of its making,
grammar of justice,
syntax of mutual aid.

A feeling towards it,
dimly sensing a rhythm, is all we have
until we begin to utter its metaphors,
learning them as we speak.

A line of peace might appear
if we restructured the sentence our lives are making,
revoked its reaffirmation of profit and power,
questioned our needs, allowed
long pauses. . . .

A cadence of peace might balance its weight
on that different fulcrum; peace, a presence,
an energy field more intense than war,
might pulse then,
stanza by stanza into the world,
each act of living
one of its words, each word
a vibration of light--facets
of the forming crystal.



Wage Peace

by Judith Hill

Wage peace with your breath.
Breathe in firemen and rubble,
breathe out whole buildings and flocks of red wing blackbirds.
Breathe in terrorists
and breathe out sleeping children and freshly mown fields.
Breathe in confusion
and breathe out maple trees.
Breathe in the fallen
and breathe out lifelong friendships intact.

Wage peace with your listening:
hear sirens, pray loud.
Remember your tools:
flower seeds, clothespins, clean rivers.
Make soup.
Play music,
learn the word thank you in three languages.
Learn to knit, and make a hat.

Think of chaos as dancing raspberries,
imagine grief as the outbreath of beauty
or the gesture of fish.
Swim for the other side.
Wage peace.

Never has the world seemed so fresh and precious.
Have a cup of tea and rejoice.
Act as if armistice has already arrived.
Celebrate today.



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