Poetry and Peace
Por: Yvonne Weekes
Sometimes I feel the world is in total chaos. We argue about the simplest things. We see the worst in others. We believe that some people are unlovable. We speak but do not listen. We accuse rather than love. We look to tear down rather than build up. We make mistakes and hurt others but cannot find it in our hearts to forgive. We are consumed by jealousy when others succeed. We are not happy with the success of others. We want grace but are often unable to give grace to others.
I watch the news on BBC, CNN and what do I see? Countries in flames.
Afghanistan, Haiti, Mali, Syria, Ukraine, Somalia, and Yemen their children hurt.
We hurt. We maim. We kill. We destroy. We fight. We war.
Man against woman. Woman against man
Man destroying the planet with lip service being paid to the climate disaster awaiting us. The polluters affecting the weakest and the most vulnerable.
Refusing to regulate the impact that their greed has on others.
Brother and sister against sister and brother.
Sister against mother. Grandchild against elder.
Country against country.
Sect against sect.
Religion against religion.
Political party against Political party.
We put God in the sky but rarely in our hearts.
The gun is King, and the knife the accomplice.
And what must we as the poet do about this seeming senseless situation?
Can our poems bring about the social justice and equity for all that Is so desperately needed?
What words can we weave together to make the heart still enough to see through all the gun smoke. All the dripping blood and tears of mothers, fathers, sisters, daughters who see their own, lying dead in the streets and gutters of this world? Who sees the necks of loved ones snapped, guillotined, and strung for speaking too loudly, speaking too clearly, speaking too boldly, giving up their life for the right to freedom and peace and sunlight.
We the poets must commit to performing in bars, clubs, villages, churches, streets, fairs, town halls and squares. Our poems must be accessible to all. Poor and rich. Employed and unemployed. Teachers and Engineers. The weak, the voiceless and the marginalized. We must be the observers of injustice, inequity, and bigotry.
We – the poets will carry the baskets of pain on our heads. And will and must not be silenced.