Truth is Empowerment

Truth is Empowerment
“I’m never a reliable narrator, unbiased or objective. Anthony Bourdain”

This poem speaks truth,
it does not imagine something.
it does not say,
this is what I imagine addiction,
murder, prostitution, or farming to be like.
This poem opens its mouth and says what really happened.
my mother told me years ago:
always speak truth, never tell a lie.
color it some if you must, the way you
color a page in a coloring book but
never tell a lie.
I was in a spelling bee and ended up
facing off a 5th grade boy.
He couldn’t spell “psychology”.
I spelled it correctly. I won a big blue ribbon.
I took it home and told my mother
I almost didn’t spell it because I liked the boy,
he had always been nice to me.
That is when she told me to always be truthful
my father nodding in agreement.
So years later when a lover gave me a wakizashi
I was proud. He taught me how to wield it.
Once I used it to defend my home when someone broke in.
My husband did not say,
you could have killed yourself.
He smiled and hugged me.
Truth is empowerment.
A sword is empowerment.
Spelling a word correctly is empowerment.
Truth is empowerment.
This poem speaks truth.

Ticket to Philadelphia

For Fireblossom Friday at Real Toads. Welcome back Shay!

Ticket to Philadelphia
The ticket to Philadelphia cost
$43 in 1983 –
It was a one-way ticket.
My friends said I should be safe –
get a round trip ticket.
It was the midnight train
arriving at 6 a.m. in the morning.
You met me at the station
and thoughts of the round trip ticket
melted with colors of dawn
bounced off the cobblestones
finally came to a stop in the gutters.
I fell in love with Philadelphia.
I didn’t need the round trip ticket
So I cashed it in.
I cashed you in a month later.
I still love Philadelphia
But now I live somewhere else.

Cherry Blossom Week Continues: Find the Light & Blue Boundary

copyright kanzensakura

copyright kanzensakura

To continue the week of cherry blossoms, I am posting a rare live performance of World Order. Usually their live performances are medleys. This medley includes one of my favorites: Blue Boundary. In this number we see Genki Sudo’s incredible talent for writing music and staging more so than in the taped videos and other songs he has written. Find the Light and Blue Boundary are songs about looking for the light in yourself, others, the universe and letting that light shine forth. Waking up to knowledge and awareness of the universe, the spirit world, the human world – how sometimes the thoughts in us are secret activities because others may not understand or want to understand, but to continue to search, to open ourselves to the reality of the blue boundary (spiritual awareness, unlimited possibilities).

I hope you all enjoy. The music is superb and the choreography is some of the best World Order has done.


# 1 on the List


A co-worker has a list posted outside of her cubicle.  It is full of sayings, you know the kind.  But #1 is “Life isn’t fair, but it is still good.”   Well, actually, sometimes it isn’t but hopefully, it will be.  A few weeks ago, I read a post on another blog that broke my heart.  I am a sucker for the helpless and if the helpless is a child or an animal, my heart bleeds forever.

 There was a posting about a street dog who although sick and suffering, was tortured by “humans” because the dying dog bothered them.  Hello?  Bothered them???  My rage turned to pain and then grief and I am still grieving for that dog.  I will grieve until I lose my memory.  I have been thinking since then, that what causes us pain, what causes us to pray to God for mercy for those who only He remembers, is what makes us truly human.  See blog at:   (good stuff here but sometimes, it will break your heart – but always inspiring.  Check it out)

 Let me go back 15 years.  I was working for a state agency and my job was to approve and authorize hospice care.  I mainly dealt with persons who were HIV+.  I also volunteered for a local AIDS network who helped those who were disabled by the disease or dying by getting their groceries, caring for their pets, emptying their garbage, changing their diapers….holding their hands and loving them because many of them had been disowned by their families and their….dying bothered them. 

 I was contacted, off the record, by a policeman who was acquainted with me.  He told me they had hauled in a homeless, 13 year old HIV+ girl.  Her mother had died several months earlier of AIDS.  The girl’s grandmother grudgingly took them in but the girl took care of her mom – food, clothing, sick care, everything.  She had contracted HIV by being raped by her mother’s HIV+ boyfriend.  The grandmother was ashamed of them and turned her back because their illness and dying bothered her.  When the mother died, the grandmother turned the girl out on the street.

 The policeman had noticed the girl off and on and how her condition was deteriorating.  He contacted me to see if I could help.  I went to the juvenile facilities to see the girl – thin, dirty, tired, frightened, covered with sores and obviously picked at/abused by passersby who were bothered by her dying.  I arranged for her to be taken to a children’s hospice.  I then stayed with her until they came to get her.  I washed her face and hands, combed her hair, hugged her.  She melted into my arms and then she asked,  “am I going to die?”.  I pulled her closer and said, “Yes, you are going to die.  But you will be taken care of.  You will be clean and treated kindly and loved.  And when you die, you will be mourned and you will be missed.”  Three weeks late, she died at the hospice. 

 So, life was not good for the dog or the girl.  In some ways, though, it did get better although they went through hell to get to something better.  The dog died and was given a decent burial by a group that cared for the sick, smelly, scabby animal and tried to do the right thing for it.  Anna died but she was loved. 

 To this day, I mourn and grieve for her.  She has been added to that special place in my heart for those whom everyone except God has forgotten.  She lives there with the dog and other animals and people who shouldn’t have been treated as they were – some of whom died alone.

 So what makes us human?  What adds greatness to our humanity?  That room in our heart for those mourned by maybe, only us.

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