Nobody wants the war, only the money
fights on alone.
From Beat Poet Philip Whalen
In the light of current world events, Miriam’s Well will be publishing poems about peace (and perhaps war). Please send some to firstname.lastname@example.org. May be previously published, and will credit. Need not be topical. Looking for your actual emotional and historical experiences–not just vague good wishes.
Here is a haiku, written yesterday by Albuqurque Poet Laureate Mary Oishi:
today not one bird
thin snow caps on ev’rything
the hush before war
This next poem by David Shapiro is one of the poems that has meant the most to me, influenced as I was by the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 and the suicide of a student protestor. On January 16, 1969, Jan Palach set himself on fire in Prague in protest against the August 1968 invasion of Czechoslovakia by Warsaw Pact troops.
The Funeral of Jan Palach
When I entered the first meditation
I escaped the gravity of the object,
I experienced the emptiness,
And I have been dead a long time.
When I had a voice you could call a voice,
My mother wept to me:
My son, my beloved son,
I never thought this possible
I’ll follow you on foot.
Halfway in mud and slush the microphones picked up.
It was raining on the houses;
It was snowing on the police-cars.
The astronauts were weeping,
Going neither up nor out.
And my own mother was brave enough she looked
And it was alright I was dead.