On Bowling Green, Sweden and Massacres

 

I read in the news today they’re rioting in Stockholm,

days later, days beyond the triumphant ballast

of an egomaniac struggling with air time,

community, credibility, condescension, cowardice.

 

I suggested to a friend, ‘perhaps this is the plan’

that the idea was fed to the giant orange,

and he spoke too soon,

he wanted the moment before it occurred.

 

Before it occurred, before the wall falls,

long before anyone of any realistic frame of mind,

even has a chance to process the ordeal.

and then today, they followed through to save face.

 

Think about the magical kingdom we live underneath,

the one with false pretense, ignorant lashes, lined pockets,

oh but then I’m a crybaby for not having my share,

meanwhile people in worse position than me are new believers.

 

The New Believers – seems like a ripe old cliche

fittingly frightening factual news,

wait fake news, fake news, fake news

bad call!

 

When the ‘Bowling Green Massacre’ occurred,

as devastating a reality that sacrifice was,

it was the actual resignation of truth that hurt us all,

meanwhile we packed our bags for Sweden, oh no!!

“Homegrown Extremism”

“Homegrown Extremism” – President Obama

Really, it is difficult to argue a more stable and consistent response to a tragedy that confuses and impacts our lives as a nation. We did or did not know people directly. We did respond with our own theories and convictions of the reason for this tragedy. We were not there, so we didn’t experience first hand the true terror of this tragedy. We did in our own personal and private manner, experience the grief and pain of this tragedy. No one can question that. So now do we react? Or do we take pause – again – and begin to formulate a plan.

The only act we can do today is attempt to resonate a dialogue that helps – maybe not in this election cycle (a ludicrous reason), maybe not in this month, perhaps not this decade – continue the healing nature of recognizing how the human condition comes in a primary form far before the material gains of a party or biased way of thinking.

I choose personal faith, the serenity prayer, and hope –

(God) Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, wisdom to know the difference.

-the parenthesis are purposeful-

or perhaps this works instead …

Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.

Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.

Max Ehrmann, Desiderata, Copyright 1952

… finally, one of my mother’s favorite …

War Is Not Healthy For Children And Other Living Things – Lorriane Schneider

Clowns Among Children

We are a sad face

To listen to our squeal

We can never erase

Such a psychotic wheel

~

They play their stupid games

Each one cruel as another

Doesn’t matter their aims

Just a hypocritical bother.

~

I wonder what they imagine

when fear is a constant knock

Across the pond the whine

of wives in superficial frock.

~

Is this a nation that truly leads

Or are we only as callous

As the earth we cultivate weeds

That such a freedom is us.

~

People die yet they don’t listen

What can they possibly think

A nation that whose only mission

To weigh in such juvenile ink.

~

Perhaps in time we cannot allow to forget

The natural pain and angst they beget.

Check Your Need

Check your nails,

primp your hair,

fix your tie,

pull that food out of your teeth,

people die

~

Meet the boss,

play the silly fool,

smile to your strangers

walking by,

be sure we all can see your eyes,

people die

~

plan your life,

hug your animal

frolic in the springtime air,

plant your garden,

there’s more beyond the world you live,

people die

~

‘I read the news today, oh boy’

‘if you try sometime, you get what you need’

‘and you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack’

‘there’s a man over there with a gun in his hand’

‘stand up and be counted’

everything sounds so familiar and right when we lose!

~

for the years continue to climb,

lives begin and transpire

incidents define,

heart and soul and positivity decline

while we every day wake up to the morning news …

people still die.

~

© Thom Amundsen 2016 March

Lyrics

Beatles

Rolling Stones

Talking Heads

Buffalo Springfield

AC/DC

 

Haven’t Heard

I listened only long enough to fear,

the easiest emotion,

that moment when suddenly confusion, our lives,

becomes less about

being in control,

far more about wanting to

run away.

I want that,

more than anything else in the world,

I don’t want to be there when it happens.

I don’t desire definition.

Whether we begin to accept anything at all,

seems relevant only to those who might no longer need hope,

those who are the souls walking the earth tonight.

They are the ghosts in and around our mechanical antics,

fleshing out the reality of our lives,

while we with little regard for our own sanity,

struggle to understand just why hate needs to be a precedent

in our daily lives.

I cannot imagine the horror beyond my own intellectual

reaction

to all of the cruelty that exist outside my door,

outside yours, theirs, and wherever I walk tomorrow,

well that could be the right place again …

the wrong time doesn’t really have definition anymore.

~

Perhaps there is something to the purpose of faith

beyond expectation, beyond us, beyond me.

If We Could Choose

Smoke wafted across a city horizon,

this was anywhere you decided to glance

a balmy November morning,

no different than the day before.

Except today we wonder

we are curious within the scope of an hour

if our world will turn upside

down.

Or will that remain the accentuated day

somewhere else,

far away from everything we love.

(even if at the end of the day we still do love …)

Do we still have opportunity to simply observe,

or has Evil crossed paths

with every illustrated region of our lives.

Have we suddenly become part of the greater scheme,

that world interacts, interlaces with everyone’s pain,

not just the local loss,

in fact a living, breathing, loving society –

likens the term,

wishes allowed we could dream of

natural conditions

An Upsetting Time

Stunned, a brief awareness,

then disbelief, then horrific, ugly,

insane realization.

My people, your people, we people,

all of us trying to

breathe.

We are told to

‘look the other way’

in a manner of speaking only because we still have

compassion.

We are asked to pass judgment upon soul driven desire

across the divide we see only torment,

now on the other side,

resentment.

What world do we live in might refuse admittance,

what scheme, grand design are you trying to sell me,

how should I respond,

when where I lay my head, the roads, paths,

the forest beautiful in all her natural innocence

begins to question

anyone.

What does freedom mean to …

would the real world please stand up.