June 25, 2015

Poetry Friday--"Pastoral Politic"

I've ranted and raved here before on various topics. Today's poem, obstensibly about a wildflower, is more about a lobbying group that thinks all politicians can be bought and that the American public is made up of the fearful and the ignorant. They take pride in America's #1 ranking in the world.

Click on the image to enlarge for easier reading. © Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. I enhanced the illustration with bindweed flowers photographed locally. The illustration is from An illustrated encyclop√¶dic medical dictionary. Being a dictionary of the technical terms used by writers on medicine and the collateral sciences, in the Latin, English, French and German languages (1890), courtesy Internet Archive.

The horrific act of terrorism, which took place last week in South Carolina, left me feeling empty. What have we become?

The proliferation of guns is one aspect of the tragedy. Another is mental health. And the third, is a something that makes everyone uncomfortable--racism. Most people deal with it through denying it exists. The following turns denial on its head:



As individuals we must become aware of our language, our interactions, etc. Recognize that things we've done or said, however unintentional, may be perpetuating the problem of racism in America. We must strive to be a model for the younger generations. I found a link to a "toolkit" that may provide you with a place to start in thinking about racism and kids.

This week's Round-Up is being held at Carol's Corner. Last Friday, Carol posted a prayer poem by Maya Angelou, which, if granted, will make my post for today totally irrelevant. I welcome my irrelevance.

17 comments:

  1. Wow, Diane, what a comparison. This poem captures the heart of racism- those vigorous roots really do spread and spread and spread. As the Anglo mom of two African American college-aged sons, I can't even begin tell you how your poem speaks to my heart. Sadly, I don't see your poem ever being irrelevant. Carol
    Here is an essay you might find interesting. http://www.charlottemagazine.com/Charlotte-Magazine/July-2015/We-Still-Have-a-Race-Problem/

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    1. I hope you're wrong about my irrelevancy, Carol.

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  2. Thanks for the poem, post, and video, Diane. I have thoughts from a complementary angle on my blog today. Praying that we can honor and follow the Charleston families demonstrating the power of love over hate.

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    1. The Charleston families are amazing. I'm envious of their faith.

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  3. Diane, I think your metaphor is a powerful one. The bindweed is an apt choice for describing that what seems appealing for the surface is may in fact be dangerous. We have to take the time to research, learn, and dig below the surface of what politicians say.

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    1. I'm afraid many of us are too lazy to research, learn, and dig. And afraid, too. If we acknowledge the problem, we'll be obligated to act.

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  4. Thanks for your powerful poem, video and resource link. The bindweed is the perfect metaphor for the insidious workings of those who would oppress to satisfy their own personal agendas. Love the ending: toxic. Says it all.

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    1. I thought the video was very clear. I wish I could share it more widely.

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  5. Bindweed. I'll never be able to look at it the same way. I always knew it was a tenacious weed, but now it will represent harmful attitudes left to spread by heedless attitudes. Even before today, I was planning to improve my discussions about differences and acceptance, but after your post and the SCOTUS ruling, I am galvanized to do more and do better. Our kids deserve it.

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    1. I always thought the flowers were a variety of cultivated morning glory that has escaped a garden, but, when I started looking into them, what a shock!

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  6. Stunning, Diane...I'm still so stirred by the President's eulogy, and your post just adds to my feeling that we have turned a corner, perhaps, in our nation's willingness to talk honestly about race. Thank you.

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    1. When I saw him singing, and the crowd singing with him, I could feel something that's bigger than hate. Call it what you want, but I think "a loving community" about covers it.

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  7. "Vines, like lies, turn and twist". I imagine you've had a go at eradicating bindweed, Diane, not so easy, takes more than one season. Your poem makes me sad, and the video shows some different points that my staff studied quite a few years ago to begin our school year. It feels as if there's been no change. Thanks for such a compelling post.

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    1. Funny you should say that about no change. Little did I know that today the SCOTUS would hand down a decision on marriage equality. How quickly things have changed (relatively speaking), now if we can start things moving on the racism front...

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  8. the imagery in your poem is sharp and hits home; luv the video, the research the reality the message the resignation

    have a nice weekend

    much love...

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    1. The reality is subject to change. I hope we're heading in the right direction from this point on. Friday's SCOTUS decision on marriage equality was significant in that change is possible.

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  9. Lots to soak up with this post, Diane, starting with your excellent poem. The dousing is welcome. As I told Robyn, I see so much hope when I look at my daughter and her friends– there's much about this next generation that gives me hope. I just wish the changes could come more quickly.

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