“I Have a Dream”

In the Wake of Martin Luther King Day

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

“The tensions are not between the races, but between the forces of justice and injustice; between the forces of light and darkness.”

                                                                        – Martin Luther King

 

Psalms 15

Lord, who can be trusted with power,
and who may act in your place?
Those with a passion for justice,
who speak the truth from their hearts;
who have let go of selfish interests
and grown beyond their own lives;
who see the wretched as their family
and the poor as their flesh and blood.
They alone are impartial
and worthy of the people’s trust.
Their compassion lights up the whole earth,
and their kindness endures forever.

(A Book of Psalms, translations by Stephen Mitchell)

 

#MeToo Rising

This image reminds me of the explosion of women’s emotional and revolutionary energies in 2017 and entering 2018 – from the refusal to put up with sexist, racist, demeaning treatment to an uprising against the misogyny of Trump and Republican leaders.

As the video below says: We Are the Fire!

 

Still I Rise/Nevertheless She Persisted

This is a tribute to the 98% of black women who voted for Doug Jones in the Alabama election and helped contribute to the defeat of Roy Moore.

Still I Rise

Maya Angelou, 19282014

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

Solidarity!

“It is in the shelter of each other that people live.” (Anonymous)

“It matters not that someone is born, but what they grow to be.” (Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter. Author: J.K. Rowling)

I’ve been absent for a while as I’ve been on what I described to a friend as an existential walkabout on the road less travelled. I felt dog-tired and unmotivated, asking myself every day “What’s it all about?”.  For some reason I felt quite short-circuited, then I had a dream which was just a message – to create art which was healing for the Earth and for its inhabitants.

So here I am back again, feeling far more motivated (thank goodness, I hate it when my MoJo up sticks and vamooses), with the above image which I’ve called “Solidarity”.

In my time away in the wilderness, I’ve wrestled with this whole question of love, violence in society and so much intolerance and hatred. I finally came to the conclusion that I am simply not interested in pathetic excuses for supporting hate and violence. Life’s too short for then negative. That’s the choice and responsibility of those who live in fear, on their knees, happy to see people who are in any way different subjected to violence, abuse and belittlement.

And I call it out as cowardly and craven because those who are happy to embrace intolerance, racial division and hatred never have to face the consequences themselves. They aren’t the 8-year-old kid who was subjected to an attempted lynching by teenagers at his school. They don’t have to worry about being shot out of hand by the police, acting with impunity, for the “crime” of being black or in the wrong place. They don’t get beaten up for being gay or trans-gender. They aren’t black kids in Australia subjected to abuse on the streets and repression by the police, governments and social services.

I am far more interested in those who show love, kindness and respect for people because they have open hearts and are willing to embrace fellow human beings of whatever colour, religious belief, sexual choice or disability because it is this which is our future. I support all those in environmental organisations fighting for the future of Mother Earth.

Living on your feet rather than cowering on your knees takes courage and hope and moral choice for good not evil. Thank god there are so many good people out their in the community of so many countries who inspire hope, optimism and respect!

Detour
 
I took a long time getting here,
much of it wasted on wrong turns,
back roads riddled by ruts.
I had adventures
I never would have known
if I proceeded as the crow flies.
Super highways are so sure
of where they are going:
they arrive too soon.
 
A straight line isn’t always
the shortest distance
between two people.
Sometimes I act as though
I’m heading somewhere else
while, imperceptibly,
I narrow the gap between you and me.
I’m not sure I’ll ever
know the right way, but I don’t mind
getting lost now and then.
Maps don’t know everything.

~ Ruth Feldman ~

 

 

Building New Worlds

If you look back at history, you can see that the means of production is always changing, improving the way in which production is carried out, BUT usually with horrendous results for those thrown out of jobs as innovation destroys old ways of producing things.

It’s always struck me that resisting is a very short-term way of thinking  and that, if we’re forward-looking, we can harness changes to benefit the great majority, and not just enrich the coffers of the billionaire class.

So if we look at what’s happening today with the technological revolution, robots, driverless cars and trucks, etc., then we – the people – need to be considering how we turn these changes to our advantage. I’m certainly not saying I have all the answers but I do believe that, if we act instead of reacting, we have huge opportunities to create vastly different communities, ones where creativity is nourished,where all people are respected and treated with compassion, and where education is a joy rather than the grinding chore it has been turned into today by mindless bureaucrats trying to churn out badly educated robots for business moguls.

We also need to see the world as a community of individuals, supporting and respecting each other, and organising for peaceful coexistence.

Life is more than being on a joyless treadmill, working to pay the bills or worrying how to make ends meet if you lose your job. It’s far more than sending young men and women to die horrible deaths on battle fields along with the “collateral damage” of killing the civilian population.

We can look at shorter working weeks; sustenance payments to everyone; creative education outlets to build a thriving artistic and literary aspect of society; and so on and so on. We can support politicians who oppose war and support international cooperation.

I don’t have particular answers but I can see the shoots springing up of new ways or producing and new ways of living.

And as I said in my previous post, I’m an optimist and I think humanity can move onwards and upwards with grace and flair towards building completely new ways of operating communities for the general good. Just takes some imagination, co-operation and love!