Posted in 100,000 Poets, Musicians, Artists and Activists for Change, The BeZine Table of Contents

The BeZine’s Virtual 2020 100TPC Event—Poetry, Music, Art for Peace, Sustainability, Social Justice

The BeZine’s Live 100TPC Event

Poetry, Music, Art
Peace, Sustainability, Social Justice

Poetry. It’s better than war!

—Michael Rothenberg
Co-founder of 100,000 Poets (and friends) for Change

Welcome to the 2020 Virtual (Aschronous) Live Event

Dedicated to Jamie Dedes
Editor Emerita

It is time once again for The BeZine live 100TPC event, this year in the midst of a global pandemic, racial tensions worldwide but particularly focused around the Black Lives Matter movement in the US, and raging wildfires related to Climate Change. Wars continue, as they always seem to do.

Our focus here is on positive change in the areas of Peace, Environmental and Economic Sustainability, and Social Justice. The BeZine approaches these issues in the context of spiritual practice and through the arts and humanities.

Today, under the banner of 100,000 Poets (and friends) for Change (100TPC), on the 10th Anniversary of 100TPC, people the world over are gathering online to stand up and stand together for PEACE, SUSTAINABILITY and SOCIAL JUSTICE. There are over 800 100TPC mostly online events worldwide scheduled for 26 September 2020, and many others throughout the year.

This year will have a few differences, here at our Virtual 100TPC event. The largest change that we in the core team of writers and editors feel is that Jamie Dedes, our Founding Editor and Editor-in-Chief emerita, has stepped down (read more here, Jamie in her own words). Jamie modestly called herself the Managing Editor, then eventually added Founding. She did more than “manage” us (like herding cats, trust me), she lead, inspired, supported, counseled, and loved us. And we love her back.

Jamie, I assume that you are reading this. We miss you. And we dedicate this 100TPC live event, and every issue and blog post, to you. We hope that you live and rest comfortably in the remainder of your time here surrounded by love and spiritual light.

When we started online, we were the only online event. Now, in the Time of Coronavirus, we are one of many. The others are streaming live, something we never did before. We have more of an asynchronous approach—writers, artists, musicians drop by the page and post something throughout the day. Others come, view, respond, perhaps add their own work.

In addition to our asynchronous / live virtual event on this page, The BeZine this year co-sponsors with Miombo Publishing-African Griots the live All Africa Poetry Symposium in Celebration of 100 Thousand Poets for Change 10-Year Anniversary, on Zoom and streaming on Facebook (see details below).

—Michael Dickel, Managing Editor

Instructions for sharing your work.

It’s twelve years since I started using poetry for activism, involving myself first with Sam Hamell‘s Poets Against the War. Almost ten years have passed since poet, publisher, musician and artist, Michael Rothenberg, and editor, artist, graphic designer, and translator Terri Carrion, co-founded 100,000 Poets for Change (100TPC) to which I am seriously devoted.

Through the decade our 100TPC poet-activist numbers have grown. We’ve expanded to include allies. These creatives from around the world share the values of peace, sustainability, and social justice. They speak out against corruption, cruelty, tyranny, and suppression through poetry, story, music, mime, art and photography, sometimes at personal risk.

—Jamie Dedes, Editor Emerita, 04 June 2020
The Poet by Day

From last year, we again celebrate youth activists—our future:

these precious perceptive youth

“Providing food, shelter, clothing and education is not enough any more, because all of this would have no meaning in the end, if your children do not have a planet to live on with health and prosperity.” —Abhijit Naskar, The Constitution of The United Peoples of Earth

this perfect blue-green planet, her youth
dream among the strains of their hope,
dream of us like our sun and moon,
coordinating  … if only we would,
sowing the rich soil with right-action,
cultivating a greening of our compassion,
acting on a commonsense vision

the fruits of our being-ness plant their
ideals, shared values, a call for accountability,
for a re-visioning unencumbered by insanity,
rich fields to harvest, color, sound, textures,
rough and smooth, the deep rootedness of
their stand and stand for, their wise demands
casting a spell that we might see with one eye,
splendor hidden behind our irresponsibility,
their effervescent call, blossoming unity, vision –
bright spinning planet gently graced with these
wildflowers, these precious perceptive youth.

Dedicated to the young people of the world who teach us many lessons as they reach across borders in their stand for climate action. 

© 2019, Jamie Dedes

Jamie Dedes’ poem originally appeared on her blog, The Poet by Day.
Read more about Autumn Peltier, Mari Copeny, and Xiye Bastida, young people changing the world, here.

Instructions for sharing your work.

All Africa Poetry Symposium
in Celebration of 100 Thousand Poets for Change
10th Anniversary

Saturday, 26 September 2020 at:

  • 3 PM (Jerusalem, Kenya
  • 2 PM (Botswana, Egypt, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe)
  • 1 PM (Nigeria)
  • 12 Noon (Sierra Leone)
  • 8 AM (US-East Coast)

You are welcome to attend and we look forward to presenting an exciting, dynamic and vibrant Poetry Symposium, where Africa speaks of itself through poetry.

The 100 Thousand Poets for Change Movement was founded 10 years ago by Editors, Poets, and internationally acclaimed Artists Michael Rothenberg and Terri Carrion —in order to speak change, to speak truth—against racial injustice, wars, poverty, corruption, the demise of human rights and smothering of human freedoms. The movements speaks through literary arts activism and social change-activism arts.

The Poetry Fête is co-hosted by African Griots and The BeZine in coordination with 100 Thousand Poets for Change. Poets in this All Africa Poetry Celebration are from Sierra Leone, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Egypt, and Zimbabwe. Co-host and Emcee, Mbizo Chirasha, has worked tirelessly with 100 Thousand Poets for Change since its inception a decade ago, through literary arts projects GirlChildCreativity Project and the Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign. Internationally renowned Jerusalem-based poet and The BeZine editor Michael Dickel will co-host the streaming events and attempt to wrangle the technology. This mega event will be streamed lived on several digital platforms.

The event will Live Stream in The BeZine 100TPC, 2020 Facebook group page.


Co-Host and Coorinator for All Africa Poets

The All Africa Poetry Symposium was a great success earlier today! We had poets and registered audience from these countries:

  • Botswana
  • Israel
  • Kenya
  • Machakos
  • Morocco
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Sierra Leone
  • South Africa
  • Uganda
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

The Zoom events was recorded, and will be made available online after processing and editing, date to be determined. Meanwhile, most of the event live-streamed and is available still on Facebook here.

We are trying something new this year!

To view the virtual, asynchronous poems, art, photography and music videos, scroll down to the comments (scroll down the page to see comments).

To share your poems, art, photography and music videos for our “live” virtual 100tpc today, please add your work or link to it in the comments section below (scroll to the bottom of the page to add to comments).

Remember the Themes
Peace, Sustainability, and Social Justice

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The focus of "The BeZine," a publication of The Bardo Group Beguines, is on sacred space (common ground) as it is expressed through the arts. Our work covers a range of topics: spirituality, life, death, personal experience, culture, current events, history, art, and photography and film. We share work here that is representative of universal human values however differently they might be expressed in our varied religions and cultures. We feel that our art and our Internet-facilitated social connection offer a means to see one another in our simple humanity, as brothers and sisters, and not as “other.” This is a space where we hope you’ll delight in learning how much you have in common with “other” peoples. We hope that your visits here will help you to love (respect) not fear. For more see our Info/Mission Statement Page.

19 thoughts on “The BeZine’s Virtual 2020 100TPC Event—Poetry, Music, Art for Peace, Sustainability, Social Justice

  1. Again

    The world has gone mad. Again.
    And again voices incite—then hoarse leaders
    pretend to have been polite. They did not shout
    fear and hatred to explosive tension, to a thin-
    wire stretched, first sounding a note then cracking,
    snapping in two, each piece twisted. The world goes
    mad. Again. The leaders call for calm, like arsonists
    who work in the fire department. The fires burn
    in the streets at night. The checkpoints flow
    with blood and tears. And most of us just want
    to go to work, have coffee with friends, teach
    our children something other than this craziness
    in a world gone mad. Again. And most of us want
    to turn away and not see the burning, the smoke,
    the arsonists lining up toy soldiers at borders
    ready to pounce, to attack, to burn. Again.

    —Michael Dickel (from War Surrounds Us)

    Also published on Haaretz online, with a discussion of the poem by Vivian Eden.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. on the ground of battle

    it’s just your old soul and mine and
    this intuition we share on the ground
    of battle, witnessing the foment of hate,
    anger feeding disenchantment in the street,
    the acquisitive tendencies of the elite,
    cowardly saber-rattling, cut off from authority,
    from that innate expressively honest power
    of our erotic selves, our instinctive selves,
    the non-rational knowing that embodies
    strength, nothing weak or pornographic
    in its expression, a profound antithesis
    to the pornography of war and hate that,
    in the end, is about impotence, about an
    emboli of narrow minds, grasping politicians
    stirring tribal dissents for their own ends
    or dropping bombs like a child bangs pots –
    to overwhelm the fear of thunder, a game
    of chicken, of a hawk-hawk play toward
    a mutually assured destruction, just a
    matter of time . . .
    as we stand the ground of one another’s
    battles where peace would be radical and
    the unholy alliances of conflict might
    burn themselves out, find their way into
    calm, but here we are, once again, in thrall
    the sociopaths have us bloodied and bound ~
    their eyes in the aging face of a clockwork orange,
    numb to the obscenities of maim and murder …
    time now for change, for new ways to be in this world

    –Jamie Dedes
    © 2013, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved

    From Jamie Dedes, our EDITOR EMERITA for whom this year’s event is dedicated.

    Jamie Dedes’ poem appeared in The BeZine 100 Poets for Change 2014 edition which you can find here.

    Liked by 2 people


    Last night I dreamed of arm stretched Africa
    Last night I dreamed of borderless Africa
    Last night I dreamed of brothers and sisters living in harmony
    I dreamed of thriving vitenge industries in Africa
    Salaam, Salaam my mother land Africa, Salaam

    Last night in Kenya I saw spears and arrows turned into farming hoes
    Last night cotton, coffee and tea industries steamed
    I saw genuine smiles with sparkling white teeth in Sudan
    I saw brothers in Nigeria disarming and disowning Boko Haram
    I saw a serene Somalia soldiering on building Al-Shabaab ruins
    Salaam, Salaam my mother land Africa, Salaam

    Last night, Africa in unison echoed political stability
    Last night, Africa in unison echoed social cohesion
    Last night, South Africa was umbrella for all blacks in the rain
    Ethiopia in black mourned Hachalu Hundessa raising a white dove
    Salaam, Salaam my mother land Africa, Salaam

    Last night black trader bought jewellery from Djibouti
    Last night black trader bought oils and perfumes from Tunisia
    Last night black trader sold exquisite African style fabric from Dakar
    Last night black trader sold beautiful baskets from Zimbabwe
    Salaam, Salaam my mother land Africa, Salaam

    Last night African leaders kissed Africa, we loaned west
    Last night Africa imported and exported within
    Last night African industries revived, African sweat streamed
    Last night corruption was hanged we sang freedom songs
    Salaam, Salaam my mother land Africa, Salaam

    Last night P.L.O Lumumba reminding us of modern slavery
    We condemned vestiges of slavery in Sudan and Libya
    He paved path for Pan-Africanism and asked pertinent questions
    Last night we asked why African conflicts are manufactured outside Africa
    Last night I saw one Africa, one heritage loving our language and culture
    Salaam, Salaam my mother land Africa, Salaam

    Today rise Africa, from the grave W.E.B Dubois chant RISE
    Marcus Garvey, Kwame Nkrumah, George Padmore chant RISE
    Haile Selassie, Mwalimu Nyerere, Kenneth Kaunda chant RISE
    Aime Cesaire, Léopold Sédar Senghor, Nelson Mandela chant RISE
    Bob Marley and Miriam Makeba melodies echo Africa unite
    Salaam, Salaam my mother land Africa, Salaam

    —Jerusha Kananu, Kenya
    Hear on FB

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Bound by Bitterness

    The trauma of injustice
    lives in our soil and soul ;
    we die of dreaded disease –
    bitter toxins contaminate
    the human flesh we consume
    as our staple diet.

    Vigilante barbarians and
    self seeking justice
    has destroyed our humanity;
    we have forgotten how to
    feel and feed others.

    We are too wound up in
    our own pit of despair
    and inflected ferocity to listen.
    Our ears are open but our insight shut –

    Hate has infested our enslaved auras
    and calcified our bones.
    We use our words to
    slay not save;
    we observe not that
    we kill the wounded
    who suffer our same fate,
    for we are too tightly strung.
    ironically stuck to a mental rung
    in our arbitrary frenzy
    to unseat the sachem.

    We cannot be healed
    by intro-focus but by feeling;
    feeling the fear and pain
    of those who travail
    as we too endure
    and wail in our trouble

    We must feel not as fools
    but as the freed.
    We reason not as slaves
    but as saints.
    We fight as victors not victims
    for a soldier who fixates on death
    is already defeated.
    He who conquers has trained
    his eye on the living.

    We overcome when our swords are raised against pain not people;
    for what shall we do with our own rant that obssesses with vengeance;
    to rip the heart of
    the cantankerous viper
    who halted our treasured lineage –
    are we too then not killers.

    We only truly heal once we embody
    the writhing and wounding
    of massacred souls around us
    who are colourless in death;
    once our hearts are touched
    by injustice not race.

    Our fight for freedom
    is about them;
    It is in looking through the panes
    and pangs of a wider world
    and knowing we have been called
    to carry the dying and to
    uplift the frail and falling.
    Only then will we be free.

    When we believe that
    only those black like us
    suffer the fiery furnace –
    we become the masters
    of our own bondage.

    Hatred has never liberated a slave –
    it is his thinking and
    awakened sense of worth
    that snaps the chains from his feet.
    it is his hunger for peace
    that has him walking free.

    There is deliverance for those
    who find peace in pain –
    it takes time to die to self
    but that is what we must fight for;
    for Madiba’s wisdom.

    A wisdom that pierces
    the darkness not the dead;
    for our eyes are trained
    on our victory
    not our war;

    Let our mourning therefore
    birth a madonna that
    portrays a triumph
    wrought in toil.

    (C) Jambiya Kai

    “The power of words”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Echo Michael’s comment, Jambiya. These are powerful words, in the true spirit of our common language, Poetry. We can only come close to the truth through poetry … and poverty … and death! We must hear more from the voices of Africa, which is after all the cradle of human life.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. One of my favorites of hers, it speaks volumes of past, present, future. ❤

    Out of the Womb of Time, a poem…

    out of the womb of Time they slide
    peasants and kings, artisans and queens
    murders, warriors, healers, peacemakers
    the grandfathers and grandmothers
    on whose shoulders we stand

    they are with us, their spirits sensed
    . . . . though unseen
    their hearts are in our mouths
    as they guard and guide

    feet rooted in the mud of Earth
    we drink the wine, eat the roots
    and sing the songs we inherited
    their sayings are our sayings
    their voices are our voices
    carried on breezes
    like the music of cathedral bells
    like the call of the muezzin
    they chime and summon
    they sum what came before

    from their gnosis
    whispered in the ear of silence
    we learn: we are nameless but not lost
    we too shall echo
    shall be the shoulders
    shall be the great progenitors
    shall hold the Vision and the Light
    along the path . . .
    . . . . beckoning

    Originally published in Brooklyn Memories

    © 2012, Jamie Dedes

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The stench of horrific pain
    Uproars in unknown ruthless measures,
    the missing piece of debilitating outrage in
    hurdles of jerks & untoward precepts;
    An unending inner cry for social justice & change-
    Anticipation the veto strength of a sustained shrouded past!
    -Benedicta (Akosua) Boamah 2020.

    Liked by 2 people

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