“Now Hear This”

This is a page dedicated to addressing current issues in our society through the medium of poetry. Periodically we will feature a poem from \’Figtree Books\’ that we believe engages in a critical way, the ongoing dialogue on formative issues in our lives as a society.

Our Words Create Our World…
For Better or Worse

The right to freely express ourselves has been sanctified in the highest Code of our society. It is one of the things that we claim with an almost religious zeal. Unfortunately we are not always very conscientious about the impact of our expressions on each other, and if we are, then we do not seem to care.

The claiming of this right has an implicit assumption that as a society we are civilized enough to bear the burdens: intellectual, political, cultural, spiritual, social, and  legal; that the wanton expressions of our “freedom of speech” sometimes create. This is a careless assumption.

Time and again, events have shown this assumption to be problematic to say the least. Ideologues, whether they be politicians or religious figures, continue to be overwhelmed by the ramifications of the frivolous exercise of this “right”. Even as we speak we are witnesses to the negative banter of opposing voices, and to real violence, and threats of violence resulting from the indiscretions of a few who would dominate with their “words”.

For better or worse, our words create realities that we must then deal with in the various circumstances of our lives. As the agents of our thoughts, words express the deepest longings of our souls. Our words, at their best, create peace. At their worst, they result in tragic conflicts. Our words can create feelings of compassion, or they can engender emotions that negate our efforts at well needed reconciliation.

Our expressions can build the bridges that bring us together, or they can cause the kind of alienation that makes neighborliness almost impossible. Our words can heal, or they can cause wounds from which we never recover.

While we cherish the right to freely express ourselves, let us never forget the sacred responsibility that we have to make this world better. Let us help with the healing; not exacerbate the hurt. Our words create our world… for better or for worse.

‘Lukewarm Thoughts’

If I were a careless candle
Waxing eloquent from the flame of my own burning
I would set free by my heated tongue
The liquified rantings of my softened core
And for a fleeting moment
Touch with my vanishing heat
The exposed senses of those who seek my glow…
And just as my warmth were known
I would go cold
Returning to my hardened state…

If I were a careless candle
I would promise you light
And then go out
Leaving you cold… and dark… and hard.

(From the book  ‘Of Scattered Seed and Broken Souls’  by Roy Alexander Graham,  Copyright 2006)

R. A. G.
Roy Alexander Graham

Copyright 2012 Figtree Enterprises, Inc.
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