Rows of Woe

Never Again3 OfirAsif

Photo: Ofir Asif

 

For we owe

Them to know

How rows of woe

Not long ago

Came to show

What can grow

If we do not forgo

Those who kowtow

To the lowest of low.

 

For the Tuesday Photo Challenge: Row

 

Awaken

Never again6 OfirAsif

Photo: Ofir Asif

 

Awaken to what never should have

Taken place,

Yet had.

The millions

Whose lives were snuffed by calculated horror

Tattooed hate,

Enslavement, and

Smoky clouds.

Remember it,

Because such evil

Should not be allowed,

And yet there are the voices

Still denying.

There are those

Who would repeat,

Who relish violence and

Lament “not finishing the job.”

Awaken,

To what never should have

Taken place.

Yet had.

 

 

 

For The Photo Challenge

Grain of The Past

Poland OAsif

Photo: O. Asif

May the grain of the past

Tell the story.

May history speak

Of the truth

That must

Never be buried

Like heads in the sand,

Or in hesitant voices

That won’t take a stand.

May the stain of the past

Be the guide to these times

So no alleged ‘fine men’

Torch-lit hate in the night

Once again propagate

Let return

Evil’s blight.

 

 

 

 

For The Daily Post

Forever Uniform

idealmente.tumblr.com

Photo: idealmente.tumblr.com

While life streams by in flows of odd

And change evolves

Or roils

Or frightens,

Some truths remain forever uniform:

Love holds

Hate shatters,

Reason wizens

Division splatters,

Hope grows

Care matters.

 

 

For The Daily Post

Hold your ground …

no wounding

These days, with much strife in the world and overmuch rhetoric of fear and hatred, it can seem easy to feel pulled to lash out, to “get it through the thick skulls” of those who are supposedly different/less-than/not-as-right. It may seem justifiable to use violence: emotional, verbal, physical, sexual, religious, political. It may seem like “this is the only language these people (insert different/less-than/not-as-right populace here) understand.”

Frustration breeds anger. Helplessness breeds desperate acts. Rage breeds blindness.

Let us not wound others in attempts to heal/correct/make-right/avenge/justify.

Hold your ground for kindness.

There is plenty pain in this world without adding to it. More wounded people will not a healing make. There is plenty drama without conjuring more of it. More despairing people will not hope bring.

Hold your ground for care.

May there be a path to true-heart-reason. Not to ‘fairness’ maybe, but to humanity. Not to ‘justice’ maybe, but to compassion. Not to ‘paying back’ but to gaining calm. Not to ‘avenging’, but to taking a step toward finding a common ground. One we can all hold on to … a healing span.

May there be less wounding. Wounds already borne will not heal faster if more are inflicted. There will be no less rage if ire remains amplified. Fires will not be put out by constant dose of fear or hate or it-is-their-fault-that-I-have-to-do-it. No more. Alienation. No more. Harm.

Let us all, hold our ground. In open hearts. In listening. In understanding. It is past time.

Whatever fights you are pulled to become embroiled in–personal, communal, religious, political, national, global–may you keep your feet firmly rooted in empathy. May the seedlings of care grow strong and fine. May we patch up the hurts to foster quickest healing, and may we carry hope and light, for they are the menders of all hearts.

 

bandaid pup

 

Mean Math …

 

math

“If I have four and you give me more than I have more.”

This axiomatic truth came from the mouth of a bright preschooler. His speech is difficult to understand, but his ideas are crystal.

He asked me, the other day, about math. More like, told me. Checked to see I understand …

Math, but also some other things.

“If I get angry and then my mommy gets angry than we have a lot more angry.”

Yes. That’s true.

“I don’t like it when we have more angry.”

I totally understood that, and told him that I didn’t like ‘having more angry’ either.

“It is lots more better when we have giggles. I love giggles.”

So do I.

He was quiet a moment, then asked me about the news he’d heard. Children often pick up more than you give them credit for, and understand more than you would like to think they have internalized.

“A lot of people are angry and crying on TV,” he said. He was referring to the news of three teens who were kidnapped and murdered by Hamas terrorists in Israel. The teenagers’ bodies were found that day, and his parents were aghast and upset with the realities in the Palestinian territories, terror, hate, and rage. They discussed the news among themselves, along with their reactions and thoughts. He saw and heard reactions of others, perceived the agony of desperate angst, the fumes of hate. I’ve seen it, too. It is difficult, difficult stuff.

“Yes,” I responded. “They are.”

“Are more people going to be mean?” he worried. “I don’t like it when more people want to be mean.”

Oh, how I agree, dear boy, neither do I.

He wasn’t quite done. How could he be? These are big issues, even for grownups, let alone little ones. He pressed on: “If more people are going to be mean then it is going to be even more mean and more mean.”

“I understand.”

I think I sighed. He looked at me a bit quizzically, adorable in his earnestness. I smiled at him and asked, “do you have suggestions about what people can do?”

“I don’t know,” he said after a thought. “Maybe a ‘safe tantrum’?” (in his house, this is the term used for when someone–usually him…–gets very angry. They can’t hurt themselves o others but they can punch a boxing bag and shout a little and jump and jump …).

I nodded. Safe tantrums would be a good, in fact a very good alternative.

“But,” he interjected, “even if they still feel mean I think maybe they need to learn to use their words.”

 

From the mouth of babes, Little Teacher. Simplified reality yet no less wise. In all war, terror, conflict, violence–may all find room for less hatred, more reason, some space, more safety, less meanness … more peace … in their hearts.

 

the problem with hate

 

 

 

Be Kind

scatter kindness

If you see a place of hatred by another–

Take a breath

Be kind.

Hate binds to hate.

It needs no urging to expand.

If you witness horror, darkness–

Extend kindness

Offer light

To chase some of the sorrow

It will help heal yours

In kind.

If you learn of rage, of war, of needless famine

If the world unfolds atrocities to bear–

Hold dear to peace

And cultivate compassion,

It will be the only thing to make difference

In repairing

Agonies born of human mind.

If you know of bad

If you recognize the loss of soul

That evil brings–

Be kind.

To those who have been harmed

To those who lost their margin

To yourself …

The knowing it itself

Can make a wound upon your spirit

That kindness bathes in care

To overcome.

Be kind.

Be kind.

Be kind.

be kind