Fuel Our Resistance Spirit with Poetry

  • Week of April 9, 2017

April is National Poetry month and it couldn’t have arrived soon enough. Even before we could write, humans used poetry to understand and cope with trauma. The policies and erratic leadership of the Trump Administration have been traumatic (to varying degrees) for all-of-us. We know that the justice will be poetic. Until then, we take solace in the words of our poets:

A voice from the dark called out,
“The poets must give us
Imagination of peace, to oust the intense, familiar
Imagination of disaster. Peace, not only
the absence of war.”

But peace, like a poem,
is not there ahead of itself,
can’t be imagined before it is made,
can’t be known except
in the words of its making,
grammar of justice,
syntax of mutual aid.
— From Denise Levertov’s 'Making Peace'

To keep imagining peace, all-of-us must refuel our spirits with poetry.

Here’s how: 

1. Read this poem by Syrian poet, Dr. Hussam Jefee-Bahloul.

2. Read the work of Juan Felipe Herrera, the United States official poet laureate, and the child of migrant farmers.

3. Read this article about “The Bridging Between”, a story of war veterans in South Carolina using poetry for healing.

4. Take a look at these resistance poems. Some may be familiar, others new to you, but they are all worth a read.

5. Write your own poem and send it to us at contact@wall-of-us.org. If it moves us, we will (with your permission) publish it in next week's posts!