The stars are brilliant at this time of night and I wander these streets like a ritual I don’t dare to break for darling, the times are quite glorious.I left him by the water’s edge,still waving long after the ship was goneand if someone would have screamed my name I wouldn’t have heard for I’ve said goodbye so many times in my short life that farewells are a muscular task and I’ve taught them well. There’s a place by the side of the railway near the lake where I grew up and I used to go there to burry things and start anew. I used to go there to say goodbye. I was young and did not know many people but I had hidden things inside that I never dared to show and in silence I tried to kill them, one way or the other,leaving sin on my body scrubbing tears off with saltand I built my rituals in farewells. Endings I still cling to. So I go to the ocean to say goodbye.He left that morning, the last words still echoing in my headand though he said he’d come back one day I know a broken promise from a right onefor I have used them myself and there is no coming back.Minds like ours are can’t be tamed and the price for freedom is the price we pay.I turned away from the oceanas not to fall for its pleafor it used to seduce and consume meand there was this one nighta few years back and I was not yet accustomed to farewellsand just like now I stood waving long after the ship was gone.But I was younger then and easily fooledand the ocean was deep and dark and blueand I took my shoes off to let the water freeze my bones.I waded until I could no longer walk and it was too cold to swim but still I kept on walking at the bottom of the sea for I could not tell the difference between the ocean and the lack of someone I loved and I had not yet learned how the task of moving on is as necessary as survival.Then days passed by and I spent them with my work and now I’m writing letters I will never dare to send.But there is this one day every year or sowhen the burden gets too heavyand I collect my belongings I no longer needand make my way to the ocean to burn and drown and start anewand it is quite wonderful, setting fire to my chains and flames on written wordsand I stand there, starring deep into the heat until they’re all gone. Nothing left to hold me back.You kissed me that morning as if you’d never done it before and never would again and now I write another letter that I will never dare to send, collecting memories of loss like chains wrapped around my veins,and if you see a fire from the shore tonightit’s my chains going up in flames. The time of moon i quite glorious. We could have been so glorious.
Charlotte Eriksson
That’s very trusting. Iris watches Anke search our backpacks.We’re saving people’s lives. We thought we could be,Anke says. I’m more fixated on her arm in my backpack than on what she’s saying, though. That bag is nearly empty, but it’s mine. She’s messing it up. Her hands might not even be clean.When she does stop, I immediately wish she hadn’t. Denise, she says, I need to search your bed next.My gaze flicks to my pillow. I. I. Could I.She doesn’t like people touching her bed. Iris stands, guarding me.You’re touching it, Captain Van Zand’s brother says.Iris shoots him a withering look. I sat at the foot, which is the only place that’s OK for even me to touch and I’m her sister.Anke’s sigh sounds closer to a hiss. Look, we have more rooms to search.I squirm. No. Not squirm. I’m rocking. Back and forth. Wait, I say.You can’t— Iris goes on.Just ’cause she’s too precious to— the man argues.Wait, I repeat, softer this time, so soft that I’m not even sure Iris hears it. Can I, can I just, wait. I can lift the sheets and mattress myself. You can look. Right? Is that good? Right? Is that good? If I lift them? I force my jaw shut.No one says anything for several moments. I can’t tell if Anke is thinking of a counterargument or if she really is trying to make this work. Her lips tighten. OK. If you listen to my instructions exactly.You’re indulging her? Captain Van Zand’s brother says. She’s just being difficult. Have you ever seen an autistic kid? Trust me, they’re not the kind to take water scooters into the city like she did.Denise, just get it done, Anke snaps.I don’t stand until they’re far enough away from the bed, as if they might jump at me and touch the bed themselves regardless. I blink away tears. It’s dumb, I know that—I’m treating Anke’s hands like some kind of nuclear hazard—but this is my space, mine and too little is left that’s mine as is. I can’t even face Iris. With the way she tried to help, it feels as though I’m betraying her by offering this solution myself.I keep my head low and follow Anke’s orders one-handed. Take off both the satin and regular pillowcases, show her the pillow, shake it (although I tell her she can feel the pillow herself: that’s OK, since the pillowcases will cover it again anyway)—lift the sheets, shake them, lift the mattress long enough for her to shine her light underneath, let her feel the mattress (which is OK, too, since she’s just touching it from the bottom) . . .They tell us to stay in our room for another hour.I wash my hands, straighten the sheets, wash my hands again and wrap the pillow in its cases.That was a good solution, Iris says.Sorry, I mutter.For what?Being difficult. Not letting her help me. I keep my eyes on the sheets as I make the bed and let out a small laugh.
Corinne Duyvis
WILL WORK FOR FOOD © 2013 Lyrics & Music by Michele JennaeThere he was with a cardboard sign, Will Work For Food Saw him on the roadside, As I took my kids to schoolI really didn’t have time to stop, Already running late Found myself pulling over, Into the hands of fate The look in his eyes was empty, But he held out his hand I knew my kids were watching, As I gave him all I had My heart in my throat I had to ask, What brought you here? He looked up and straight into my eyes, I wanted to disappear. CHORUS He said… Do you think I really saw myself, Standing in this light Forgotten by society, After fighting for your rights WILL WORK FOR FOOD, WILL DIE FOR YOU I AM JUST A FORGOTTEN SOLDIER, I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DOv. 2 He put the money in his pocket, Then he took me by the hand Thank you dear for stopping by, I am sure that you have plans He nodded toward my children, Watching from afar It’s time they were off to school, You should get in the car My eyes welled up and tears fell down, I couldn’t say a word Here this man with nothing to his name, Showing me his concern I knew then that the lesson, That today must be taught Wouldn’t come from textbooks, And it could not be bought CHORUS He said… Do you think I really saw myself, Standing in this light Forgotten by society, After fighting for your rights WILL WORK FOR FOOD, WILL DIE FOR YOU I AM JUST A FORGOTTEN SOLDIER, I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DOv. 3 I told him then that I had a job, That I could give him work And in return he’d have a meal, And something to quench his thirst He looked at me and shrugged a bit, And followed me to the car We went right over to a little café, Just up the road not too far After I ordered our food he looked at me, And asked about the kids Shouldn’t these tykes be in school, And about that job you said. Your job, I said, is to school my girls, In the ways of the world Explain to them your service, And how your life unfurled.He said… Do you think I really saw myself, Standing in this light Forgotten by society, After fighting for your rights WILL WORK FOR FOOD, WILL DIE FOR YOU I AM JUST A FORGOTTEN SOLDIER, I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DOv. 4He wasn’t sure quite what to do, As he ate his food And began to tell us all about his life… the bad… the good. He wiped his own tears from his eyes, His story all but done My girls and I all choked up, Hugged him one by one Understanding his sacrifice, But not his current plight We resolved then and there that day, That for him, we would fight. We offered him our friendship, And anything else we had He wasn’t sure how to accept it, But we made him understandLAST CHORUS That we had not really seen before, Him standing in the light No longer forgotten by us, We are now fighting for his rights He had… WORKED FOR FOOD HE HAD ALL BUT DIED FOR ME AND YOU NOT FORGOTTEN ANYMORE BUT STILL A SOLDIER IN TRUST
Michele Jennae
We read the pagan sacred books with profit and delight. With myth and fable we are ever charmed and find a pleasure in the endless repetition of the beautiful, poetic and absurd. We find, in all these records of the past, philosophies and dreams and efforts stained with tears, of great and tender souls who tried to pierce the mystery of life and death, to answer the eternal questions of the Whence and Whither and vainly sought to make, with bits of shattered glass, a mirror that would, in very truth, reflect the face and form of Nature's perfect self.These myths were born of hopes and fears and tears and smiles and they were touched and colored by all there is of joy and grief between the rosy dawn of birth and death's sad night. They clothed even the stars with passion and gave to gods the faults and frailties of the sons of men. In them, the winds and waves were music and all the lakes and streams and springs,—the mountains, woods and perfumed dells were haunted by a thousand fairy forms. They thrilled the veins of Spring with tremulous desire; made tawny Summer's billowed breast the throne and home of love; filled Autumns arms with sun-kissed grapes and gathered sheaves; and pictured Winter as a weak old king who felt, like Lear upon his withered face, Cordelia's tears. These myths, though false, are beautiful and have for many ages and in countless ways, enriched the heart and kindled thought. But if the world were taught that all these things are true and all inspired of God and that eternal punishment will be the lot of him who dares deny or doubt, the sweetest myth of all the Fable World would lose its beauty and become a scorned and hateful thing to every brave and thoughtful man.
Robert G. Ingersoll
When the great ship containing the hopes and aspirations of the world, when the great ship freighted with mankind goes down in the night of death, chaos and disaster, I am willing to go down with the ship. I will not be guilty of the ineffable meanness of paddling away in some orthodox canoe. I will go down with the ship, with those who love me and with those whom I have loved. If there is a God who will damn his children forever, I would rather go to hell than to go to heaven and keep the society of such an infamous tyrant. I make my choice now. I despise that doctrine. It has covered the cheeks of this world with tears. It has polluted the hearts of children and poisoned the imaginations of men. It has been a constant pain, a perpetual terror to every good man and woman and child. It has filled the good with horror and with fear; but it has had no effect upon the infamous and base. It has wrung the hearts of the tender; it has furrowed the cheeks of the good. This doctrine never should be preached again. What right have you, sir, Mr. clergyman, you, minister of the gospel, to stand at the portals of the tomb, at the vestibule of eternity and fill the future with horror and with fear? I do not believe this doctrine: neither do you. If you did, you could not sleep one moment. Any man who believes it and has within his breast a decent, throbbing heart, will go insane. A man who believes that doctrine and does not go insane has the heart of a snake and the conscience of a hyena.
Robert G. Ingersoll