Posts Tagged ‘creative writing’

In early August I wrote about an experience on the road between Boston and Rhode Island, an experience that I described to people as being in the midst of a Klu Klux Klan rally where no one wore a hood. You can read that post here if you like.  And though I wrote that post about my experience, my feelings in that moment, I also thought about what were the children in the neighboring cars experiencing, children of any race, what questions were they asking their parents and how were their parents responding. I especially thought that when I saw a little brown boy staring at the pickup truck in the lane next to him flying its huge confederate flags.

the full moon obscured by a screen

I was surprised later to find so little commentary on local news and on the internet about that procession of thirty-plus vehicles in New England with their giant flags driving en masse along I-95. But I guess I was using the wrong search terms. I did not think to use the words: Make American Great Again Convoy, an event that took place July 30 and 31 in Foxboro, MA.

I remember writing that I chose not to photograph anything around me that day on the road. But I do realize that it is important to capture the words and images of such events so that they can be documented and remembered. Since I wrote my original post a video has surfaced. When I first saw the still shots and read the transcripts of what people were saying that day on their CBs, I almost shrugged. I wasn’t surprised and my feelings were justified.

Then I watched the video, listened to the words, and it made me want to cry. Not out of fear but out of sadness at what darkness remains in this world. As young white men laugh about lynching niggers from the nearby trees, using blacks as pinatas, I remembered the little brown boy staring into their trucks. And I thought of a young brown cousin who I’ve been told likes to chase Monarchs at his home in New York, and I thought of my young brown nephew who likes to plant gardens in his home in Virginia. They are too young to fear what has been because they don’t know that part of American history … yet. I thought of what these people must be teaching their children and I hoped that their children somehow would one day hold hands with children of all shades and know that they were the same.

It is almost too easy to blame Trump and yet I do not want to let him and his brethren off the hook for what they have allowed to re-surface, unchecked, in this country. He was the spark for their tinder. The video is 4minutes and 45 seconds. It’s hard to listen to, and in no way kid friendly but it should be reflected upon because the sentiments expressed in the video and in similar gatherings online and in person across this country are not going to disappear overnight or anytime soon. Maybe never.

However, somehow, there is always hope for better.

In 1880, Phillips Brooks, then the Rector of Trinity Church in Boston, delivered a sermon at Westminster Abbey in England. The sermon was titled The Candle of the Lord. It was July 4th that he spoke and for the occasion he added some text to the sermon where he asked the British congregation before him to pray for his young country:

“It is not for me to glorify to-night the country which I love with all my heart and soul. I may not ask your praise for anything admirable which the United States has been or done.  But on my country’s birthday I may do something far more solemn and more worthy of the hour. I may ask you for your prayer in her behalf. That on the manifold and wondrous chance which God is giving her, – on her freedom (for she is free, since the old stain of slavery was washed out in blood); on her unconstrained religious life; on her passion for education, and her eager search for truth; on her jealous care for the poor man’s rights and opportunities; on her countless quiet homes where the future generations of her men are growing; on her manufactures and her commerce; on her wide gates open to the east and to the west; on her strange meetings of the races out of which a new race is slowly being born … “

One hundred thirty years later, I’d say we are a nation still being born.

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I must say, I’ve had a good year with gardening in so many unexpected ways.  Please enjoy a new poem, hot off the press, published in Lyrical Somerville:  Near the Window.

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… what can be done today?  That was one of the thoughts that inspired the photo essay, Branching Thoughts, now appearing on Creativity Portal.  To what do I refer?  Well, when you have a chance, please read the essay and then you’ll know what I mean. 😉

FYI, there are many other wonderful essays, articles and more to be found on the site.  One of my favorite end of year items is a beautiful 2014 calendar designed by Creativity Portal founder Chris Dunmire and available for download month by month or all 12-months at once for “less than a cup of coffee.”  Can’t beat that these days. Hope you have fun exploring all the different words and images on the site.

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check out the Spring 2013 issue of Talking Writing Magazine.  There’s just some darn fine writing and imagery appearing in that publication.  Start with Editor Martha Nichol’s reflections on Why I Love and Hate Nature Writing. And in Green Among the Bones, Marc Schiffman presents a moving recount of his travels in Cambodia in an essay illustrated with photography by Mary Dineen.  More of her work can been seen in her Image Essay.  I’ll be honest I almost titled this post “my butt hurts,” a line taken from Patricia Dubrava’s Me, Writing.  I’ll stop there.  Hmmm, okay, two more words:  treat yourself. 😉


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I believe in magic especially this winter as I’ve watched frost form upon the windows.  Read more at Creativity Portal about the Winter Window Magic I’ve seen.  Enjoy!

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A story inspired by a 5-year old in love with “Once upon a time a little girl …” 😉

Once upon a time a little girl picked a bouquet of flowers.  She put them in a vase of water and placed the vase next to a window.  Each flower upon its  sturdy stem was beautiful in the sunlight.  But then time passed and the flowers changed no matter how many times she added water.  One morning she brushed her hand across the dying blooms and a whole flower fell to the table.

It broke revealing all its many parts that had made a single whole.

The girl gently touched the fragile pieces.  While she admired their different shapes and colors and textures, she wanted her flower back as a single beautiful thing.

And so she picked up the stigma and stamen and petals and leaves and she tried to put the puzzle back together again.  It was, of course, an impossible task.  As she stood there at the window trying to decide if she should be very angry or very sad or just a little crabby, a ray of light touched a petal and the withering stems.   “It’s still beautiful,” the girl realized with a smile, “Just in a different way.”

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Hi, all.  I have a new article  posted on the lovely website Creativity Portal.com.  Check it out and let me know what you think.  Meanwhile, wherever you are in your day, I hope all goes well! 😉

To Define or Not to Define:  That is the Question


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