Tamara Willems

a good time to learn…

It is a hard thing sometimes to stand
in the sunlight, as it warms your skin
and think of all the sadness in the world
or the burdens some must
carry
my garden is such that the trees, shrubs
and vast cool green vegetation
give one the (possible) illusion that no matter
the increasing humidity and temperatures of the day
here, the outsides feel
never so bad
always a breeze of some kind
a bit of shade
I suppose, giving one hope (false or otherwise)
of a gentler world
out
there

while I know well in part, this is not true
nor can it ever be expected with someone who
calls himself a leader, of a ‘civilized’ nation
while constantly inciting divisions, increased disparity and
ever more maniacal calls for brute force and
more violence
too it is baffling, how a ‘We the people’ allow such things
to seem at all rational
and I am not even of the We, as that is not my country
but a We ..  of the world, a We
of the human race
a We, of decency, of equality and of
at the very least
of
kindness

my thoughts are that there is always great strength in education
and power
not in criminality
and this is not because I think I know
so much
quite the opposite really, it is because I know
so very
little
I read to learn
to learn people’s stories, struggles and triumphs
their courage, their wisdom, their
grace
especially for those of us who have no possible idea
of what can and cannot
be.
Our own burden of ignorance
that we often know and willingly carry
we should not shut ourselves off from learning from others
out of fear
we should instead fear only that which we know and choose
to ignore
we can learn from books, articles, paragraphs
we can learn from poetry and art
we can learn from conversations, open and honest
we can learn from each other
by the simple act of
listening
fully and completely
to the words, when spoken

we owe it to each other and to ourselves
to not just jump on brand
when it becomes the trend to do so
but instead to become harbingers of understanding
and peace
for all, not ..  for some, or for today
but for all of us

as We-the-people are indeed an  us
on this our battered planet
and we really do need each other
wholly and equally together, if we are ever
to survive

We must everyday strive to do and be
better, for each other.
We simply must,
heart and soul intact…  to my thinking,
there is no other way
forward

from
here.

Hope is a song in a weary throat.
Give me a song of hope
And a world where I can sing it.
Give me a song of faith
And a people to believe in it.
Give me a song of kindliness
And a country where I can live it.
Give me a song of hope and love
And a brown girl’s heart to hear it.
~ Pauli Murray from Dark Testament, Verse 8

Pauli Murray was a civil rights activist, a pioneering feminist, a labor organizer, a lawyer, an Episcopal priest, and a writer of nonfiction, memoir, and poetry.

and indeed someone I admire greatly, if you do not know of Pauli Murray,
now would be a good time
to learn. ♥

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