Verse for New Year’s Day 2015

ghost kites

ghost kites


Old Year, New Year: Old Kite, New Kite

A large blue Delta from Oregon
with two wide trailing tails
mice-eaten, torn by storms,
but still flying. The line knotted,
re-tied after “Hands up, don’t shoot”
and “I can’t breath” and cops killed.

ISIS and drones, beheadings and bombs,
spying on all, torture for some,
my country bought by corporations,
yet Vivaldi still sung, crops harvested,
children born and hugged and taught.
Last year’s kite crashed many times.

A large red Delta for Christmas
with a new line, new tails.
So far blue skies and a steady breeze,
but storms are predicted, injustices
multiply like mice, discord does not die.
This year’s kite, too, is fragile, vulnerable.

– Steve Shoemaker, Urbana, IL, January 1, 1015

2 thoughts on “Verse for New Year’s Day 2015

  1. 2014 was, indeed, a tough one. I decided to order my T-shirt — front says I CAN’T BREATHE, back says BLACK LIVES MATTER. I guess it really started long in the past with Rodney King. Then things began to pile up. Start in late February 2012, with Trayvon Martin. Most people who have a sense of history would probably agree that if the one with the gun had been black and the one being stalked were white, and the black man with the gun came out alive, that that black man would have been arrested, tried, convicted, and either executed or in jail for life by now. Then the kids who had the music in their car too loud in the opinion of the driver beside them. Now, in just a couple of months we have Ferguson, Cleveland, New York City, Phoenix. And, terribly, tragically, I sit here thinking “Wasn’t there another one?” — Oh, yes, three(!) more: the man in the store with a toy gun he wasn’t pointing at anyone, the man at the gas station who explained that his ID was in his car, and he was shot trying to get it, and the couple in the stairway. In at least two of these cases, the ones I know of, the policeman in question suffered not a single official reproach, one, in Ferguson by a spectacular, definitive case of prosecutorial misconduct rising to the level of criminal, in many minds. (Wierd: the prosecutor should be prosecuted.). I cannot imagine how the police got away with the murder of Eric Garner. The tactic used was illegal, and there were five or six police, plenty to go some other route to subdue, AND, they did nothing to determine if he were alive or dead, and give some help in either case. (They are trained for this. They don’t have to wait for paramedics, but the did.). They just decided that selling loose cigarettes (by a black man) was a capital offense.

    The election was also a terrible thing for those who care about the environment. Not that all Democrats are reliably pollution conscious, but the number of Republicans who are can be counted on the fingers of less than one hand.

    But somehow one must stay sane, so BJ and I are going back to UK — the Peak District, North Yorkshire, the Lake District, and, this time, a short stay in Scotland. We are praying for a little good weather for this one. Also, Bach’s B minor Mass is just as thrilling as ever, and so is the Sawallisch recording of Schumann’s Third Symphony. And all the other wonderful music I love.

    So, after this nearly unrelievedly dreary post, I say “Happy New Year” to you and Kay and Barclay, and to all you love.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Carolyn, a return trip to the UK seems like a good move for sanity and the recovery of beauty and joy. Kay and I are Barclay-less for the next two months while on the road in Saint Augustine, Palm Beach, Key West, Fairhope (AL), Isle de Jean Charles and New Orleans (LA). Friends mean more and more, especially the ones of long-standing who are, by and large, also still standing! Politically speaking, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders will continue to speak truth to power in 2015, and we get to continue to fight for what is just, loving, and peaceable. Thanks so much for taking the time and effort to write. Love to Barbie and you.

      Liked by 1 person

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