Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The State of Kentucky and a Sad State in Virginia

Today, we grieve and are angry. Another school shooting, another alleged disenfranchised shooter takes his anger out on innocents. And within hours, we

A rush to judgment – Why didn’t they shut down the campus, find the guy, have police in all the class rooms, notify everyone of the first shooting? I mean, after all, more would have survived if they had got on the squawk box. (Or he would have shot whoever was around him when the announcement was made.)

A rush to security – Metal detectors, badges, armed guards everyone, pack-backs approved, no sharp instruments in the lunch room. (Like airplanes, the end to bottled water.)

A rush to solutions – Give weapons to all the teachers; in fact, make them carry them. Let students carry weapons and train them how to use them.

A rush to rat – Is there someone around you acting strange, saying strange things? Is there someone who is a loner, doesn’t mix in? Can’t take a joke? (Really upset about wedgies.)

A rush to medicate – And if there is someone as described above, isn’t there a pill that will cure them? No more dementia, delusions, introversion. (And why did we open the asylums , and let all of the crazies out to wander the streets?)

A rush! – It must be the immigration policy, W’s fault, Hillary’s, someone’s – other than the fact we can’t learn to live together.

But remember, there is a solution to every problem, even if its wrong – which is will be.


On one of the forums, we have been discussing the way we treat each other – the lack of civility and humanity. (Imus driven to some degree.) But especially, the way we treat children, which gave me an idea.

Let’s put a ticker on Broadway and the equivalent street in London, Paris, Peking, Tokyo, Rio and other major cities that will count the number of times we “sacrifice” a child – when they are murdered, raped, made to fit, driven out of their home, starved, bombed, enslaved, and on and on.

Now, I’m not talking about the ordinary everyday things – when the old man takes his belt to Johnny – but the bad. For instance, when a school bus is bombed, or a girl’s school set on fire with the girls in it, a father sells his daughter into prostitution, the baby lovers buy a kid.
I’m willing to bet that the number would climb fast to such a large number, most of us might be sickened enough to finally do something. To abolish slavery, child labor, genocide, religious terror – and find a way for all of us to live in some peace.

Not entirely. There will still be criminals, the insane, and hate-driven; but we would drive the number down.

Isn’t that the real way to save the planet?


Today, I only have one state – Kentucky. I still need to finish Connecticut, Alaska, DC and something for the territories. I want to do so before I start the next series, one I am excited about – Ecclesiastics.

Poetic States XLVIII – Kentucky

She Ain’t Heavy, She’s My Sister

Family legend has it that we are related
to both the Hatfields east of the Tug Fork
and McCoys from the west side in Kentuck
though like a lot of our family’s gossip
it probably bears little relation to truth.

If one of my uncles ever stole a hog,
Grandma would’ve pulled him up so short
he’d never even eat a pork chop after,
let alone get in a shooting feud with kin
living on the other side of the river.

Mary Ann Todd who married the lawyer
Lincoln, followed him into the White House,
brothers and brothers-in-law soldiers
dying for Jeff Davis throughout Dixie,
their house divided as all too many were.

When her step sister Emili’s husband,
a Reb general, was killed at Chickamauga,
the president brought the widow Helm
to the capital to take solace from Mary
still mourning the loss of her youngest son

until treated shabby by General Dan Sickles
in ways barely excused by the heat of civil war.
Mary Todd continuously vilified with lies
that would have caused even Devil Anse
to curse though he stood strong for rebel gray.

And if Grandma would have been there,
the liars would have felt the scorching heat
of the gentlest woman who ever walked the hills.





Until next week, peace and may this one be better than the last.


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Blogger Dan said...

You state below that it was Robert Creeley who "endorsed" Teresa White's book "Gardenias for a Beast" for a Pulitzer Prize. Am I understanding you correctly? How did Creeley, who died in 2005, nominate a 2007 book for a Pulitzer? White lives here in Spokane, and she will be doing a reading on April 24.

2:57 PM  
Blogger Gary B said...

Dan, thanks. Creeley was a mistake and has been deleted.


6:21 PM  

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