“Being evil is only something that only humans are capable of.” Jane Goodall
Just Following Orders
In 1960 an architect appeared in court in down town Jerusalem charged with crimes against humanity. He was the architect of the Holocaust, his defence was banal, he claimed immunity because he was only following orders.
Who never questions motive? Who believes they are perfect and above the law?And who never effects harm on others? But of those who excelled in following orders, no matter how perverted, Adolf Eichmann stands apart as intentionally evil, and more so because of his claim that he was just following orders. And, so, if all do their duty, they need not fear harm? really? Think slavery. Think Eichman, think Vietnam War, Think Derek Chauvin, think so many.
Our actions always affect others, and where there is evil the effect is always negative. Harm comes to those in the orbit of such people. Just listen to Holocaust survivors.
At dVerse Lisa is hosting Prosery, a piece of prose of 144 words, inviting us to use a line from a poem by Zora Neale Hurston which comes from her work ‘How Does it Feel to be Coloured Me’ in ‘World Tomorrow’ (1928)
“Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.” Carl Jung
No, I do not weep at the world – I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife. I find it occupies me best of all. I’m a shucker from way back and I have my own rhythm and movement, a time honoured practice of holding, inserting, twisting and opening. So simple, every action economical, a form of meditation, I love the concentration, one slip and I might lose a finger – I have wounds to show for every lapse. Wounds where I surrender focus to the searing hurts of humanity. This is no escape, just a respite, a regathering from the morass of pain felt in tones of colour, known in cries for justice, that which bleeds from the despair of prison gates. If I didn’t sharpen this oyster knife I fear the world would possess my emotions and blunt my innocent dance of freedom against power.
At dVerse, Sanaa is hosting Prosery with an invitation to include a line by Rilke – “Only mouths are we. Who sings the distant heart which safely.”
Guilty Of Not Seeing
The magpie lark returned to her nest with tidbits for all, and I was struck be her persistent nature, always, every morning, heading out of the nest looking for insects to feed her chicks. And on return to her little round castle, she is always greeted by four squawking mouths, all pleading, begging for a morsel. And, of course, here lies a metaphor so obvious, that the whole of humanity is at risk of falling into this same response, squawking at the government, agencies, not-for-profits, who should tend and feed the masses. And surely we are guilty, only mouths are we. Who sings the distant heart which safely exists in the centre of all things? guilty of not seeing that the author of life who is at the centre of everything. We are, perhaps, so busy pleading for dependency that we fail to see.
At dVerse Lillian is hosting Prosery where we are invited to write a piece of prose of 144 words including the line of poem offered by the host. Grace has invited us to work with the line ” If you are a dreamer, come in” which is from Shel Silverstein’s poem ‘Invitation’
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive and then go and do that. Because what the world needs are people who are alive.” Howard Thurman
I was walking along, multi-thinking, moving my mind to the end of the day so that I could get there quicker. I’m sure you’ve done that sometime. I wasn’t paying particular attention to anyone or anything. So I was surprised when a voice called out, a voice that was so unusual it. I didn’t think it was anyone calling to me but I looked around because I wanted to see who owned such an unusual voice. I was thinking hippy, free spirited, all tie-dyed, but there was Mr Business Suit beaming a smile. I stared at him and he gestured to the door “if you are a dreamer, come in.” Am I a dreamer? Yes I’m a dreamer, but I’m not coming in, I have my own dreams, I’m not buying yours, no way! They cost the earth, literally.” I walked away.
At dVerse Kim is hosting Prosery with an invitation to use a line from the poem ‘The Song of Wandering Aengus’ by William Butler Yeats. The line is: “I went out to the hazel wood, because a fire was in my head.”
At dVerse Linda is hosting Prosery with an invitation to take a line form one of Mary Oliver’s poems – ‘Spring Azures’, “Sometimes the great bones of my life feel so heavy.” and use it in a piece of prose.
“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there someday.” A.A. Milne
The Tides That So Easily Turn And Pull
I launched the kayak, noting everything in my periphery and set forth forth with a flourish, gliding across the glassy, still, estuary. this was morning, but not my life. I launched equally as carefully under my mother’s watchful eye, but the estuary of life was never glassy or still in my experience. However, I had to start somewhere, and my own dictum is, don’t dismiss the wisdom of the young who are simply shifting gears through the tide of life which is so fickle. We carry our own weights, the things we love, the things that haunt, the things we enjoy, and that which brings pain, yes, even that. Sometimes the great bones of my life feel so heavy and it is more than enough to bear when I wish I could steady the tides that so easily turn and pull us against ourselves.
At dVerse Lilian is hosting Prosery and inviting us to use the line “Reading what I have just written, I now believe.” from Louise Gluck’s work ‘Afterward.’ dVerse Poets – Prosery
“Journal writing gives us insights into who we are, who we were, and who we can become.” Sandra Marinella
My heart was pounding, I was ready to burst, I would spill over, I would be consumed in my emotion. An all consuming anger possessed me. Why did he say that and in such a tone? Why did he look at me that way? I just wanted to fire back and level the field, but the words wouldn’t come and I felt everyone’s eyes. I felt isolated in this moment of exposure, so naked before the world. I said nothing then, but I resolved to journal and reflect later.
Reading what I have just written, I now believe that I was lost in reactive feeling. I know I experience grief as a strange land, but this surprised me. The death of those close stirs the heart in ways beyond the rational moments imagined. Strange how writing and reflecting can so simply offer opportunity of transformation.