pandemic…

pandemic

i’m having
difficulty breathing
these days
the air is heavy
with the ash
of funeral pyres
so many souls
cast into the four winds
from every
corner of the world
women and children
old and young
even those whose life
has not yet begun
wrapped still
in their mother’s womb
i’m having
difficulty breathing
these days
the air is heavy
with the ash
of funeral pyres
battles raging
while the funeral pyre ‘s lit
they cool not
before the next soul
ascends to the pyre
while war’s fears
again fill the air
no time to dry tears
just more
flames ushering souls
i’m having
difficulty breathing
these days
the air is heavy
with the ash
of funeral pyres

678ad505453d5a3ff2fcb744f13dedc7-1CHARLES W. MARTIN (Reading Between the Minds) — earned his Ph.D. in Speech and Language Pathology with an emphasis in statistics. Throughout Charlie’s career, he maintained a devotion to the arts (literature/poetry, the theater, music and photography). Since his retirement in 2010, he has turned his full attention to poetry and photography. He publishes a poem and a photographic art piece each day at Read Between the Minds, Poetry, Photograph and Random Thoughts of Life. He is noted as a poet of social conscience. Charlie has been blogging since January 31, 2010. He has self-published a book of poetry entitled The Hawk Chronicles and will soon publish another book called A Bea in Your Bonnet: First Sting, featuring the renown Aunt Bea. In The Hawk Chronicles, Charlie provides a personification of his resident hawk with poems and photos taken over a two-year period. Charlie’s lastest book, When Spirits Touch, Dual Poetry, a collaboration with River Urke, is available through Amazon now.

product_thumbnail.phpCharlie’s long awaited Aunt Bea Collection is out. He says, “Bea In Your Bonnet: First Sting is a collection of germinal poems featuring Aunt Bea. Aunt Bea’s voice is one I’ve heard almost every day of my life. Family observations, lessons, and advice given to me and every other family member who had the good sense to listen. Her homespun philosophy most likely will not be found in any collegiate textbooks or for that matter in any local town crier newspaper catering to city dwellers. Indeed, she has a different way of viewing the world; a bit old fashion, sassy, and steely at times but a viewpoint which has engaged my imagination and heart. I sincerely hope you too will find some morsel of wisdom in her personal observations and interpretations of life’s events, but do watch out for her stingers.”

You who lights candles . . . Salam to you . . .

file261336842312-1Bitter is this dawn that no longer comes
With the prayer of doves on rooftops
And your face

This treacherous sky above your head
The colour of lead and flame
These forests of stars smothered
In the blinding smoke

These banners ripping the air around you
Woven of cries
These fields of ruins and debris
Where you stand shivering
In the nudity of daylight

You, a lonely prophet in this besieged space
Who listens to the laments of stones
And writes his testament
With tears and blood

You, who lights candles
For the passing caravans of martyrs
And falls asleep with the night

Salam to you

. . . this  poem . . . in my mind i wrote it for a friend in Gaza . . . i haven’t heard from him in weeks now . . . 

– Imen Benyoub
© 2014, poem, All rights reserved; photograph courtesy of morgueFile

pictureIMEN BENYOUB ~ is a multilingual, multi-talented writer, poet, and artist from Guelma, Algeria. Imen currently lives in East Jerusalem. She is a frequent guest here on The Bardo Group blog and with On the Plum Tree and Plum Tree Books Facebook page as well.

~

ALICE WALKER (b. 1944), American activist and Pulitzer Prize winning author:

Not with a bang … but with a whimper.

Peace: It’s a decision.

I Consider Myself

soldier-silhouette-at-sunsetI consider myself to be
a peaceful person
living in a place
not fraught with war
void of detonating bombs
fragments of life gone

I consider myself but
to no avail
for the rumbling of war
has never been far
as off in the distance
on foreign soils
it creeps very close
to my own back door

I considered myself to be
living my life apart
even during Viet Nam years
seen on broadcast news
of death and others tears
of something I was
unable to touch

I considered myself & then
my son joined in the ranks
of men and women called
to fight in a war fueled
by the inner turmoil
of a people distant
and out of sight

I considered myself to be
untouched by the carnage
the destruction of
people unknown to me
whose lives were
never mentioned

I considered myself & then
you came home & you
seemed different
for you brought the
memories with you
that now touch my life
to forever affect it
with war

I have known many who became soldiers. My own father and his brothers fought in World War II, my brother was in service during Viet Nam but did not see battle. But when my own son went to the Middle East, even though he was fortunate enough not to have had to be in a battle, he saw enough of the aftermath, that it has affected his life in ways I will never be able to understand.  For most soldiers do not speak of what they have seen and heard but these things, I know, cannot be erased from memory.

– Renee Espiru

© 2013, poem, Renee Espiru, All rights reserved
Photo credit ~ Karen Arnold, Public Domain Pictures.net

c796b9e96120fdf0ce6f8637fa73483cRENEE ESPRIU ~ is a creative prose writer and poet. She began delighting us with her work at Turtle Flight, My Muse & Angels in March 2011. The work she shares with us there includes short stories. Renee is a daughter, mother, grandmother, and seeker of spiritual peace and soul-filled freedom. She’s studied at the graduate level and has attended seminary. She describes her belief system as eclectic, encompassing many faiths. She believes “Nature is the basis of everything that is and everything that is also a part of Nature.”

POETS AGAINST WAR, #5: again… by Charles W. Martin

quare

they have come
to bury
the war dead
with the same
precision
as
a soldier’s march
step-by-step
grave-by-grave
with each movement
of the minute hand
another
is interred
into mother earth
step-by-step
grave-by-grave
minute-by-minute
tear-by-tear

– Charles W. Martin

© 2013, poem and all illustrations, Charles W. Martin, All rights reserved

Invitation: We’d like you to join us – not only as readers – but as writers by putting links to your own anti-war or pro-peace poems in the comment sections. Next week we’ll gather the links together in one post and put them up as a single page headed “Poets  Against War.”  Thank you!

.
678ad505453d5a3ff2fcb744f13dedc7-1product_thumbnail.phpCHARLES W. MARTIN (Reading Between the Minds) — earned his Ph.D. in Speech and Language Pathology with an emphasis in statistics.  Throughout Charlie’s career, he maintained a devotion to the arts (literature/poetry, the theater, music and photography).  Since his retirement in 2010, he has turned his full attention to poetry and photography. He publishes a poem and a photographic art piece each day at Read Between the Minds, Poetry, Photograph and Random Thoughts of Life. He is noted as a poet of social conscience. Charlie has been blogging since January 31, 2010. He has self-41V9d9sj5nL-1._SY344_PJlook-inside-v2,TopRight,1,0_SH20_BO1,204,203,200_published a book of poetry entitled The Hawk Chronicles  and will soon publish another book called A Bea in Your Bonnet: First Sting, featuring the renown Aunt Bea. In The Hawk Chronicles, Charlie provides a personification of his resident hawk with poems and photos taken over a two-year period. The newly published When Spirits Touch recently became available on Amazon.