Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Poetry and Fate

Do you ever come across a poem and feel like it couldn't possibly be an accident that you came across it? Let me explain. I've been very, very bothered (definitely an understatement) by the anger and hatred surrounding the proposed mosque that may be built near the former World Trade Center site in Manhattan. (Whomever coined the phrase "Ground Zero Mosque" must be a poet, right? Only a poet knows how to intentionally use language like that, right?) I won't rant any more, except to say that America is scaring me and has been scaring me for the past couple years.

That whole "President Obama is a Muslim" thing? Really scary. Do folks out there really need to resort to that kind of hate-mongering? Even if you don't agree with Mr. Obama's politics, surely you see the fear and hate behind that movement. Right?

And then yesterday I learned of the "Quran Burning Day" planned for September 11 at a church in Gainesville, Florida. Just when I couldn't be more saddened or embarrassed to be an American--along comes this garbage. It's scary, it really is.

Again, I'll hold back on my rant here. I think you get where I'm coming from. But I want to get back to my original point--I came across a poem this morning that I really think speaks volumes about America and why, sometimes, fellow Americans act in ways that make me shudder. So just when I'm at my lowest point in this arena, in comes this poem. Did fate send it?

At the Galleria Shopping Mall

Just past the bin of pastel baby socks and underwear,
there are some 49-dollar Chinese-made TVs;

one of them singing news about a far-off war,
one comparing the breast size of an actress from Hollywood

to the breast size of an actress from Bollywood.
And here is my niece Lucinda,

who is nine and a true daughter of Texas,
who has developed the flounce of a pedigreed blonde

and declares that her favorite sport is shopping.
Today is the day she embarks upon her journey,

swinging a credit card like a scythe
through the meadows of golden merchandise.

Please read the rest of the poem here. It's worth it. And if you happen to personally know Glenn Beck this Terry Jones nut-job, could you please pass it along to them? Someday, maybe everyone will come to their senses. Right?

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