Wendy Cope poem that went viral after the election/Atlantic article on why “The aftermath of the 2016 election has found many Americans seeking solace—and wisdom—in verse.”

Tribrach: for those who love (or would like to love) poetry

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Still, Poetry Will Rise – Megan Garber – Atlantic – November 1o, 2016 (an interview with Don Share, the current editor of Poetry.)

People who are poets are often very political; they’re often activists. We talk about political poetry as if it’s a kind of effusion about something going on, but the truth is, the heritage of poetry includes politicians. I mean, Yeats was a politician. Our greatest poets, really, have been active in what goes on in the world. And great or unknown, poets are participating in what makes a difference in the world. If you perceive that politics is a way of making a difference, and you engage in it, then you can get something done. And the same can be said of poetry. –Don Share

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Back home

“She gave us this gift from back home”
Understanding they are good neighbours, friends even. 
But what her voice and her skin do not say 
is she left this home her country 40 years past. There is no forgetting.  
She cooks one way one day and the other the next,  
speaks to her children in the language for them to access the knowledge, 
the culture. They learn the major tongue elsewhere.  

Uprooted at six months old he lived here for forty years.  
What his voice does not say he tells strangers willingly: I am from there” he smiles and chooses to remember. 
He tells stories and asks for them, 
visits landmarks with his children. 
Did they laugh in school at his name, at his parents' voice,  
until he owned them? Not from here, different” some say, some whisper.  
What does it take to be accepted or tolerated? What does it take  
to not be? A voice, a skin, a remembrance of identity food, people, places, customs? 
Blend in some cannot, would they want it or not, 
a mixture made over time they have a foot over some line,  
drawn with changing references it forgets history and choices. 
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Source: Oregon State University, flickr

The cemetery view

I live by an old cemetery with a few sandstones amongst the trees, and some new marble ones at the back.

For a long time, I have been afraid that I or my child may be swallowed in our morbid days by this sight, by our fear of death.

But fear of death is only fear of the unknown and fear of change, it is no evil but what we make.

These graves are Death Happened, but also Lives Lived!

How many were short, or lain not to be regretted?

The stones, the words, the few flowers say: however long they were there, here lay people who mattered.

It shines in the darkness, by the shadow of the sun in the trees, by the light of the moon on the grass:

Death is a life lived to the end. These graves are lives loved.

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“Beautiful graveyard shot” by Matt Wharton, flickr

The little things

A poem I wrote this week. Thanks for reading!

 

The little things

Fall in love and live merrily, until

the bells ring and you sing

on the most beautiful day of your life!

A book’s ending, it is the beginning.

You hope, and days add on.

 

You move, and you choose

a house for your budget, a present for each muppet,

year, after year, after year,

while they grow old far away from where you are.

You wait, and days add on.

 

A wonder, a miracle!

A new life enters yours in tears and joy,

as they start dying of old age

and others divide their lives’ worth.

You live, and days add on.

 

You fight to agree over main and silly.

Compromise” is a word with a new meaning and

lovers’ love” loses its standing

in those busy days filled with laughs and fear.

You age, and days add on.

 

They eat at your soul those days.

Little by little, they feed on hope

leaving fatigue in their wake.

Dreams slowly vanish, sorrow becomes childish.

And yet… Yet!

You try, and days add on.

 

Source: Costel Slincu, flickr
Source: Costel Slincu, flickr

A puzzle

Then

they seemed to click together

a piece for each space

a room for each block

a perfect puzzle to be completed

with each part

each desire, need

and choice of my life

fitting.

 

Now

they hang

not exactly fit

these pieces of my soul

the borders eroded and damaged

modified by time (or never right?)

and struggling I must choose

an image distorted

incomplete.