Summer 2021

Volume 8                  Waging Peace                  Issue 2

Introduction & Table of Contents

Contents V8N2

The  BeZine

Volume 8                  June 15, 2021                  Issue 2

Waging Peace
through finding common ground

Cover art: Still Life with Goldfish and Lotus
Kat Patton

Digital Image


The theme for the summer issue of 2021 is Waging Peace through Common Ground. To wage peace by common ground, we must develop empathy. We must learn to see each other, hear our words, and feel our emotions. This is the work of us as individuals. And we have to then find the links that would allow us to work together on common ground for the common good. And among the pressing common goods that need working, next to and intertwined with social justice and climate change, is peace.

In the past weeks war broke out again here in Israel. While the leaders of Israel and Hammas may demonstrate little empathy for the other side, the people do feel empathy—especially for the children killed, for the children hiding in shelters in fear on both sides. For children missing childhood. Ameen al-Bayed, a Palestinian, and Ester Karen Aida, an Israeli Jew, contribute essays that demonstrate and call for empathy. Both do work in Non-Violent Communication. Other contributors address the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, as well. And still other contributors address a range of topics related to waging peace—from mental well-being to social justice to the environment and more—and the need for common ground.

Finding common ground does not mean agreeing with objectionable, unethical, or criminal ideas and behavior. For me, it means using empathy to understand another person or group of people where possible, and recognizing what beliefs, experiences, and goals we have in common (among other possible commonalities). Before the the war here in Israel a group of political party leaders with seemingly little common ground began forming a coalition, which they completed after the ceasefire. This week a new government was sworn in to replace Benjamin Netanyahu, after 12 years.

For the first time an Israeli-Arab party has joined an Israel government, with a cabinet ministerial post as part of the deal. A far-right religious party leader will have the first term as prime minister in a power-sharing agreement and a centrist party leader the second. The party has left-wing Meretz and centrist-left Labor parties, a strong secularist party and the far-right religious party. This is also the most diverse cabinet in history. Besides unseating Netanyahu, which they succeeded in doing, what could they have in common?

Bret Stephens, a former editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post and now a columnist for The New York Times, suggests today (15 June) that they have formed a truly democratic coalition built on creating a functioning government that will work together to run the state. They have chosen a pragmatic solution to assure that the government of Israel can move on from a divisive politics headed by Netanyahu to a pragmatic politics. Each party had to let go of platform planks and ideological values while negotiating core issues of the most immediate concern. This is finding common ground.

The government hasn’t been sworn in for even 48 hours as I write this. Its experiment may not work. Possibly, though, this historic government will help a divisive, “blood sport,” politics move into a more inclusive and practical politics that can compromise in the areas we don’t have in common while focusing on moving forward on those areas in most need—our urgent common ground:

May peace prevail on earth.

—Michael Dickel, Editor

Some changes

With the first issue of our eighth volume (year), you may have noticed some changes. Most of the changes are tweaks here and there to the visible look of the pages. One very visible change is the Table of Contents below. Using a technical, behind-the-scenes tool of WordPress, the entries in our ToC are now automatically generated. As we learn to use the tool better, we will refine the formatting. 

Also new since last issue, there is a button at the top of the ToC for browsing the whole issue. If you click on that, you will arrive at the “Cover.” As you scroll down, you will see this Intro and ToC again. However, keep on scrolling and you will be able to see all of the pages of the journal. Just keep scrolling to keep reading.

And, in case you want to come back to the ToC, you will find a button to do just that at the bottom of each content page—it is a small version of Kat Patton’s wonderful cover art. 

During this year we will continue to work on the look, feel, and design of The BeZine. This is how we are working to sustain the Zine, in hopes that this will make a better experience for you, our readers.


Table of Contents




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The BeZine

Be Inspired…Be Creative…Be Peace…Be 

Spiritual Practice




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Art: The Duality of Zen, Kat Patton ©2020


We Will Always Need A Bridge …

Since this iconic song was written and introduced to the world by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel on their album of the same name, which received the award of Album of the Year in 1971, I cannot think of any point during the fifty years that followed, when it wasn’t making an important contribution to our feelings of wellbeing and solace. Goodness me, what a life this song has had and what service it has done!

My own chorus, the Sheffield based Hallmark of Harmony have, like many musical ensembles, endured this last year of lockdown doing ‘virtual’ rehearsals and occasional recorded performances. Last month, as if tentatively to begin celebrating the gradual lifting of our confinement, we produced our fourth on line project and there was no other song we could choose to represent what we all need in these times than this one. Something that we all need sometimes to get us across troubled waters. We first performed this song nearly three years ago at our 40th anniversary concert at the Sheffield Octagon Theatre with guest quartet, international champions, Instant Classic, who flew across the Atlantic for the weekend of the show to perform it with us. They generously reprised their part for this our, hopefully final virtual offering to the World and of course our very own Tim Briggs consummately provides the solo …

For the sake of humanity, may there always be a bridge for us to cross over and, for goodness sake, let there be peace in this troubled world of ours.

Text ©2021 John Anstie
Performance ©2021 Hallmark of Harmony
All rights reserved

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John Anstie
June 2021

Haiku — Bob Aron


Favorite fish market is again closed.
I can exercise alone in the courtyard.
.שוק הדגים האהוב שוב נסגר
.אני יכולה להתאמן לבד בחצר

©2021 Bob Aron
All rights reserved

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Tri Poezi / Three Poems — Faruk Buzhala

Glarus - A closer look - Digital Work - Miroslava Panayotova
Glarus – A closer look – Digital Work – Miroslava Panayotova

The burden

Life with hands in pockets,
half a pack of cigarettes in them!
And with thought in chaos
invented by my mind.

Walked the road  like a body
abandoned by itself!

Bad Times

Rising earlier than usual
Roosters peck the sunlight
Dogs howl like the wolves
Crows unsettle the sky.

What kind of day is this
The one I have to live in?!


My promises
All are gone, gone.
The memories stay
In an empty chair
On the terrace of the old house!

©2021 Faruk Buzhala
All rights reserved

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Taming Jehovah | 2 poems — Roger Hare

Image1 - Kat Patton
Image1 – Kat Patton

Taming Tiamat

If you know who first defined beauty
then place it in a poem—plainspeak
is too full of fear 
to be clearly heard.

Tiamat is a figure symbolic of the chaos of primordial creation in the Babylonian creation story.

Jehovah or Not

forgive us for the vowels 
and consonants we drop
in search of shorter words 
to not trouble us too much,

for the daily bread we scatter 
and our love of sundry illusions
that only (and inevitably) shatter
the fragile peace between us.

Your stones have gathered a reputation
for rolling of their own accord—the
sand and grit and lime and slate and 
mud, the crystalline and pressed and  

baked and cooled are moved
by their memories of when 
you roamed the Earth. 
Would you sediment in our oceans,

accrue beneath our seas, 
harden as our bedrock 
so that we may 
have a better future?

©2021 Roger Hare
All rights reserved

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Sonnets and More — Paweł Markiewicz

If the roses were blue - Digital Work - Miroslava Panayotova
If the roses were blue – Digital Work – Miroslava Panayotova

Unendingly picturesque

a pulchritudinous sonnet

I am through a superb window—looking.
An angel of feeling awakes in me.
The dreamy oak-trees stand alway leafless.
The native auspicious cue is just large.

My scenery—the enchanted verdure.
The moony old barn of Ted my dear nuncle.
I am looking at a proud throng of crows.
They belong to the whiff of every times.

The springtide looks so meek-beauteous-fair,
first and foremost  Morningstar—at night.
I daydream springwards window-view withal
of a dreamy Ovidian summer gale.

Homelike herbage that seems to bewitch all.
My cats want to enchant the fantasy.
Dreamed subtle morn withal notably.

The spring awakening

The springtide wakes up not only in dreams.
The snowdrops blooming in the moony garths.
One listens to propitious paradise.
The dearest graylag geese coming in flocks.

I think of genus Primula from afar.
The wild boar piglets were born in a grove.
I feel springwards the warmness of a soul.
Native dreameries are fulfilled galore.

Springtide be primeval home of Naiads!
I taste the verdure of some climes.
You are dreamy like fairylike bouts.
The friends of springy morn—are tender owls.

I can praise, bewitch Ovidianly.
Thus, I am able to enchant peaceably.

merest poet

You hound are a starry night over fog,
fallen in love with the Epiphany.
The moon may be mine! Told the moony dog.
With you tender garden—is so dreamy.

Bewitchment of stars, your ability.
Your hunting is dearer observation.
A moonlit night is your eternity.
May the soft ghost be in adoration!

Roses awoken in glory—starlet.
You can taste, listen and feel them galore.
Enchant the nectar like druidic glade!
It was drunk from Ovidian amphorae.

Be, you dog, a heart-shaped meek poet!
Broken wings of loneliness are dead.


Lunar time feeling—coll, blackish dreams stealing—light of the moonlets.
Caressing dreamery—lies even, blink-sea, weird fell down.

The poignant dire deceased became drab comet—sphere have picked warmness.
Several she-wolves made terrestrial grave-stones killed the fay?

Endlessly nostalgic being—the grief-pang. Hades was followed.
Heavenly moony lure become noir. Dream-ethics flies off!

However your worm bawls after all. Death-men blubbing so withal.
Just the grim Reapers, cold-blooded praise wind-breeze of gone time.

The tearful- invincible  Goblinlets  stars-thieves coming right galore.
Sensing the moonylike demise cool-blue song will be free.

The Sonnet of Dreams

Heavenly sailorling spy out the wan light-sheen of star.
Baffling unearthly time: weird having just thieved by elves.
One of pale mornings longs for some meek fulfillment of night.
Moony and nostalgic chums – comets are upon the skies.

Lonely dreamery—lying just blink-sea, weird above.
Endless nostalgia is being of pang. Hades is fay.
Heavenly moony lure, beings seem dark, Ethics fly off!
Poignant decease has become drab black, comet has picked rain.

The glow, which is deathless, at length in the sadness full bane.
Grim Reaper loves more than You dream—a bit lights of the worms.
Marvel of starlit night: I have found a little of my name.
Starry night—dreamy glow are only in the tender souls.

Sensing the moonlet, demise of cool-blue song will be free.
Your worm bawls after all certainly. Death blubbing like me.

alway – archaic: always
bout – dance
cue – archaic: mood
garth – archaic: garden
nuncle – archaic: uncle
pulchritudinous – beautiful

©2021 Paweł Markiewicz
All rights reserved

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Art: Peace, Kat Patton ©2021


Musings & Thoughts — Sandhya Anand

2015_28 - Jeremy Szuder
2015_28 – Jeremy Szuder

Musings Of A Mental Asylum

I stand tall but not proud
Since people look at me with awe
Those who cross my gates
Considered insane

Silence has no say here
Only the dead can stay
Long in silence
But tell me
Who might need the dead more
Than the newly built coffins?

I am not a coffin, but a cocoon
from which new butterflies
Find strength to fly out.
I long for their groans, growls
Cries and talks
Full of life and thoughts

Many here live, but considered dead
Even by their kith and kin
I never care for they are mine
My walls ever longing for their voices
Even the soft creepy whispers
Can bounce on my walls
To ease their solitary fears

A heartbroken teenager
with love more
Precious than life
Whose act of bravery
Brought him to me
Romeo can give up
His life to applause
Only on a man-built stage
Not the ones set by God

An employee who finds it
Monotonous to follow Routine
Who despised patterns
Of no meaning
Perhaps it might have been better
Had the sane men
Stayed the same in life
Without changes
Just like those patterns.

An old man in grey hairs
Just gave up on by his heirs
With shattered memories
Try to build the jigsaw of the past
Beautiful moments when
His heirs were young
Only to pain him again
That they were his kids once.

Even little cute kids
Come nowadays
Who refused to wear glasses
And constantly stare at
iPad lessons
They asked what, why, when
And paused for an answer
While in a rat race
Curiosity never took them to Mars
But for an occasional visit to me

There once was a man
Who liked to see and talk to men
But none had time nor ears
He claimed he saw God
And heard Him talk
Once within my comfort zone
He could talk to real men
And slowly God left him

Tell me one moment
Of civil war that broke out
From an asylum ever.
Real wars start
(In)sane world out my walls

Empathy, sympathy, compassion and care
Takes humanity out on a tour
Men who progressed
Owned them in the past
Reduced to caretakers alone
It is still better for me to be an asylum
Far more insane are those who stay out


Thoughts like soldiers marching
Over my neurons
Thoughts of fear, worry and what not else
Dancing inside my head
Telling me to die off
I try to laugh away and smile on
To live, if not for me
For those bugging thoughts
Need a head to be alive
If I just give up,
They'd be wandering
Down the streets
To find a new abode, like soldiers marching
Over my neurons
Thoughts of fear, worry and what not else
Dancing inside my head
Telling me to die off
I try to laugh away and smile on
To live, if not for me
For those bugging thoughts
Need a head to be alive
If I just give up,
They'd be wandering
Down the streets
To find a new abode.

©2021 Sandhya
All rights reserved

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Lyrical – John Anstie

Illusions - Digital Work - Miroslava Panayotova
Illusions – Digital Work – Miroslava Panayotova
What do you do when a hopeful dream begins to fray
and leaves you wanting more than all the things that thrill
heart-warming, precious moments that may not overspill
beyond the passing of another, special day. 

So drink to life as if it has a happy end 
share it even if it were not yours to share 
and then, if you don’t have enough of it to spare 
of fortune’s favours to reach out to a special friend ... 

Sing riffle, ruffle, shuffle, muffle and divide
bobble, bubble, babble, rabble, don’t be terse
ripple, topple, tipple and tumble into verse ...
a place where harmony and dissonance collide.

The air now full of music, of tales that soon unfold 
the gasping tortured spirits, grasping at their last
soul raking and heart breaking tales of one life past
and stories that would otherwise ... remain untold. 

Then how do we narrate the things that burst the soul
these uncontainable urges, are they all for you
or are they all for me, or both? So what’s to do ... 
let’s dance together, do all the things that make us whole. 

©2021 John Anstie
All rights reserved

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Passing, Stillness … Renewal – John Anstie

Spring - Photography - Miroslava Panayotova
Spring – Photography – Miroslava Panayotova

Who prefers the spring 
likens winter to the dark 
autumn to passing 

Kicking leaves and brash
a winter walk in the woods
cleansing the spirit 

Listening to birds 
heralds of summer spawning 
life’s diversity 

©2021 John Anstie
All rights reserved

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Fervor — Howard Richard Debs

Night and Light - Digital Work - Miroslava Panayotova
Night and Light – Digital Work – Miroslava Panayotova
How to make sense of it?
I will try. But this we know
at least 45 dead, children too  
all trampled, crushed
suffocated in a stampede
in a narrow corridor
on Mount Meron where
100,000 Haredi Jews,
those who tremble
at the word of God,
came to commemorate
at his supposed tomb
the assumed anniversary 
of the death of Rabbi 
Shimon bar Yochai
mystic of the 2nd century 
of whom it is told that
his criticism of Roman
rule marked him for 
execution, and forced
him to hide in a cavern
for thirteen years surviving
on only dates and carob fruit
and that finally one day
seeing a bird flying free
from a net set by a hunter
Shimon took the bird’s
escape as an omen that
God would not forsake him
and he too made his escape. 
The great sage died it is said
On the 33rd day of the counting
Of the Omer, that time between
The holiday of Passover and
The Feast of Weeks, a harvest
festival, when according to tradition
Moses brought down from Mount
Sinai the Word of God to
The Children of Israel, and
this 33rd day is called 
Lag B’Omer a day to rejoice,
as all petitions shall be answered
as it is believed on that very
day of his death bar Yochai
revealed the secrets of 
the mystical Kabbalah,
bringing light into the world
for which the fervent set
bonfires, dancing, singing
chanting ecstatically
through the night 
remembering the words
he uttered that anyone who 
sees Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai 
is certain that he will be 
in the World to Come.


It is difficult to understand another’s passion for their beliefs which leads them to do that which appears so foreign to so many. We need to focus on that which binds us as humans. We need to reconsider viewing others solely as to their difference. This poem attempts to view the matter with an appreciation for the depth of belief which leads to such a strong commitment to act in a certain way, even to the point of discounting potential untoward consequences.

News source.

©2021 Howard Richard Debs
All rights reserved

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Spring Later Time — Judy DeCroce

Almost Spring

I heard tomorrow and felt today.
                                 —William Staff

Willows breathe
the slow release of winter
quietly speaking to each other.

Time, stillness,
movement high—

Today tastes ever-smooth

as restless birds glide
taming waves of wind.

Tomorrow is coming…
                                  or is already around.

For Later—For Later

old friends—before and after

words leave as if nothing has happened
most of my life ago

calm, flowing, feeding and feeling
with some grace in the changes

towards these I move and falter
bending much—yielding less

a surprise in knowing that yes,
elsewhere is waiting
echoing the days far away

sometimes I look up with questions
into this tall world
with anchors tethered to the next

It’s Time

“…who, in their eagerness to embrace spring,
have mistaken hope for a promise—Pat Janus

The old pond restores again
and geese vee in return.

Just now, as a promising breeze lifts,
the naked woods begin to green.

And, I too go on
as twilight lengthens
lit and listening.

©2021 Judy DeCroce
All rights reserved

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B-Side Shoulders | 2 poems — Roger Hare

Spirit of the Garden - Gerry Shepherd
Spirit of the Garden – Gerry Shepherd


Shall we learn the lessons of chlorophyll?
How it holds the hands of fire and water,
combines their incompatible tempers 
for a weight of photosynthesis
heavy enough 
to turn the Earth?

Will we engage the sensibility 
of those who can compose 
a tune? Set alongside each other 
notes of different strength and tone 
that for the sake of the stave 
will work together and not apart? 

Adversarial breaths that ventilate 
around a task in common 
demonstrate they dissipate 
their rage better 
than face-to-face.

The B Side

Brutality and bias both begin
with the letter b, like banner,
bigot, baton, bled, bleed,
bleeding red on the pavement
again, bent by beliefs 
of the unbending.

Hear the blue blues butterfly-heartache
of those names stained without cause,
bone-weary with building bridges
brought to nothing over rivers
every bit as bright
as any other body.

Allow their breeze 
to fill your sails, to carry us 
together to the other side; 
a place we
cannot reach a-

Adaptation of a poem that first appeared in the ‘Black Lives Matter’ anthology published 2020 by Civic Leicester.

©2021 Roger Hare
All rights reserved

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Holding Onto My Last Breath — Joseph Hesch

I’m told there will come a time
when all will be revealed,
that moment just before you leave
where the Universe gives it up
to your virgin consciousness
and you go, ahhhhh….
And as great as that sounds,
you’ll note that your expression
of finally acquiring that enlightenment
comes in an exhalation,
more than likely your last.
I know that doesn’t sound fair,
but once you discover what
all this back-breaking, toil
and trouble life was for,
let alone about, what else is there
but to sound a short A?
Unless it’s a long ohhhhhh.
I suppose that’s why I intend
to hold my breath like a five-year-old
who won’t eat his Brussels sprouts
on that day when the Universe
comes a’knocking with my serving
of The Way, as the Buddhists might
intone. They call it nirvāṇa,
which is Sanskrit for “blowing out.”
That’s kind of what I’ve been saying,
only with an ahhhhh rather than an ohmmm.
Another translation is “liberation,”
which sounds so much better, because
I’d rather be freed from this
troubled coil, than blown out again
like a rotten basketball team,
or permanently, like a candle.
Ohm, shanti, shanti, shanti, y’all.
(Just in case.)

For those of us who don’t know Sanskrit, and I only know enough to get through a beginner’s yoga practice video, “Shanti” means “Peace.” So, I bid you all peace because we sure as hell need it. And so do I. So do I.

©2021 Joseph Hesch
All rights reserved

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I Know She’s Out There … Somewhere — Joseph Hesch

Sometimes I wonder if
I ever actually felt her warmth,
sensed her, breathed her in.
I look back and question
any place in my life where
I stood in her presence,
held her, or she held me.
I wonder if she was
nothing more than a dream I had,
when I still had dreams,
an ideal that kept me on
a path to be the nice polite boy
and good strong man, since
that was the way they said
one took to win her favor.
But I never did experience
her love and,
like most sore losers,
I have doubts now she
even exists. Perhaps, in this,
my last dream, if I stopped
searching so hard, one day
Peace will find me.

©2021 Joseph Hesch
All rights reserved

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flint stallion — Chinedu Jonathan

The Female Christ - crucifixion - Peter Wilkin
The Female Christ – crucifixion – Peter Wilkin

flint knife

you have sworn to cut us asunder
and scoop out a nation
flowing with milk and honey
circumcise the hearts of our sons
they are no longer led by drunks
they are now old enough to withstand costly battles
to drag their father’s ghost by it’s collar
men who willfully wasted away in this wilderness 
let your love fall like rain from the heavens 
let your harvest bring forth tender vine
roll away their shame of enslavement 
scrape from the bosom of their rot 
tyranny that will accompany withered desire
become again manna,
appearing from dew,
upon the roofs of our palette.

wilderness stallion

i once came across an unusual apparition 
whose hair strands were made of chrome
it was filled to its brim measure
with mangroves of dishevel thistle and torn
and definitely weighed a hefty tonne

she painfully crawled towards me
shedding profuse tears from the corner of her brow
high-jacked with the broadest of resilient candor
i couldn't believe my whole eyes
her laughter in its midst had an effervescent effect

on my entire life's perspective
i raised her up till her lifeless feet dangled lazily
it infused more seriousness to the texture in her tone
she gave me a gentle peck on my right cheek
and whispered into my left english speaking ears

"Life is whatever you decide of it…"
i tried to comprehend..but it was too late
i never even had the chance to say goodbye
she had already permeated inside every iota of me
leaving her monstrous baggage astride the foot of the Cross…

©2017–2021 Chinedu Jonathan
All rights reserved

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