In the morning, when I catch up on my news and books I never read, I think deeply. I think with my heart. I wonder if poetry can really change things. Or, if we change our readers and they inspire action.
I often tell my young college writing students that they need to pick up the baton. I tell them that they will be the ones to change what is happening in our world. Social justice issues will fall to them. They look at me bewildered.
But we need the new poets to speak up and defend our freedoms.
I want to hear what they fear. I want to know what it’s like to be released into this world. I want to hear what they endured at home, in neighborhoods not conducive to families or in homes not conducive to acceptance.
This is a call to action. This is a challenge.
Here is the first stanza of a poem in progress. Can you finish it?
We need poets more than ever.
Revolutions of the heart are over.
Our heroes dying. Our fading music
is too much to bear.
Behold the new rebels!
We are saddened and tired.
We cling to old words.
Turns of phrases
Images of hope.
We need an ally.
Palm open and ready.
Grab hold and run!
I look forward to your responses.