Amy Barlow Liberatore… stories of lost years, wild times, mental variety, faith, and lots of jazz

Tag Archives: Murrow

FIRST: Still hanging in the Garden for NaPoWriMo, where Imaginary Garden With Real Toads’ Aprille challenged us to write a “double dactyl,” which is best explained HERE. Not sure I managed form correctly; I would love any constructive criticism. This is also at Poets United on the right “crawl.” Finally, my prayers to anyone else out there with PTSD, because I don’t know about anyone else, but I was hyperventilating into a paper bag last night. Too much.

Pointless (double dactyl-ish)

Ever since Boston, the
TV preempt, I’ve been
breathing through paper bags,
tot’lly farklempt.

PTSD holds me
in its sad thrall, what’s the
point of my watching the
TV at all?

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

SECOND: A free-verse rant about media in general… with specifics.

“Liking” Murrow on FaceBook

Yesterday, some hundred years ago,
we used newspapers for news flow
Radio then put us “In the Mood”
TV babysat us, totally glued

Roof antennae, CBS on the air
Dad adjusted via attic stair
Test patterns nightly, with droning tone
Cronkite and Murrow stood out… and alone

Then came the cable, a crapfest galore
With QVC “gotta-haves,” plus prime-time gore
Televangelists weeping, shouted HOMO
Then they begged money on bottom-crawl promo

All-night-long movies, MTV Michael
Later, the twenty-four hour faux news cycle
Now, the addiction is this Internet
Needn’t leave one’s snug abode to get

housewares, clothing, and even free porn
(Hide your identity, saves you from scorn)
Facebook, all social networking, damn!
Farmville, un-friending, broadcast nastygram

Huff Post huffs and puffs ‘bout the Right
By day, the Tea Party (dons hoods at night)
Hackers and hucksters, scams and teen passes
Internet: Opiate of the new masses

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

The bottom of my email signature has a list of causes I support, along with a tag line: “Stop complaining; become part of the solution!” Seems like folks blow off steam on Facebook and via email forwards (some network blasts from Tea Partiers I know have been answered by me with calm, bullet-point questions and even suggestions… these are often answered with one line, like “You’re sadistic” or “Stop pushing your homosexual agenda at me.” (Ahem, who started the “dialog”?)

Manners are gone. Thing of the past. All that matters are angry birds, more cows for one’s farm (cyber-greed), and ranting online without doing much of anything other than spreading the word. Some is vitriolic, some is obscene, some is so darned funny I laugh my butt off and am immediately ashamed (as with Jim Carrey’s recent “Cold Dead Hands” song on a Hee-Haw set).

The Net is good for calls to action such as petitions, but the best action of all is LOG OFF AND MAKE A PHONE CALL. I have all my legislators’ local offices on speed-dial, plus the White House for my daily “Please stop the drones and bring our kids home” call. Most of the volunteers who staff those lines know me by now!

Log off. Pick up the phone. Give ‘em all hell, because they wheel and deal while you and I suffer and end up addicted to this interactive Oxycontin. Peace, Amy

So obviously I’m lousy at taking breaks; although, truth be told, I’m making much progress on the damned taxes, so I’m back for Sunday Night Funnerific-a-go-go, AKA “Four Prompts in One Poem.” Whew!

Extra! Extra! Read All About It!

In the past, a vast empire of
mighty newspapers broadened minds.
The scale of subscribers was enormous;
most papers did not more than inform us.

Eventually “news” skirted the real story
under orders from rich men who tend to
eat the truth raw and spit it out, tattered and
slimy, pro-corporate, inaccurate drool.

The print version has since been scattered
all over cyberspace – in case you haven’t
notices, HuffPost will soon make The Daily News
a ghost (it’s on the edge, like most).

As for TV, I mist over remembering
Cronkite and Murrow, mirrors of our national
conscience (back when there was such a thing).
Now it’s “Happy News,” reported by interns and

delivered by softly curved Barbies with white smiles and
a light-skinned Black meteorologist. They report on
straw polls; they pitch their network’s upcoming
programs. Even the crawl crawls, clueless.

© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

(Inhale.) Sunday Scribblings wanted a poem on the word “Subscribe”; Brain Miller at dverse Poets wanted writings on media; Brenda Warren, at The Sunday Whirl, gave us a dozen words, and Poets United (all the poetry that’s fit to print!) has Poetry Pantry. So that’s FOUR prompts in one poem, and it’s still properly snarky, as befits my sharp little pencil.

I do miss real journalism… Moyers is all I have left, except for! Peace (and a plea for something more than birdcage liner), Amy

Birdcage Liner of the TV Screen

Staying at a friend’s house, I switch on the TV. No cable, but
anything will do as I sip my Black Irish heartstrong brew.

My heart sinks… The Evening News. I listen, trying to look past
fluorescent teeth and blonde helmet hair, at the redwhiteblue flag pins, de riguere.

What kind of News Hell is this?
Gone, the anointed news anchor who
actually decided which stories were aired.

No more fastball pitches in interviews, only slow, sliding grapefruits,
and once they get to the nitty-gritty comes: “We’ll have to leave it there.”

Edward R. Murrow dug to the marrow.
Walter Cronkite, trustworthy and true, integrity personified.

The current crop of dopes read from teleprompters
and think they know the story. Or they’re ‘embedded’ (in bed)
with troops and get to wear fatigues and EV-rything!

Unsinkable twinkies at the helm, naifs who
answered casting calls for Wide-Awake 6 am hosts,
all mammary glands on deck. And in the evening,

pitch-perfect choirboys or gruff cuff-linked old smokies
navigate the stern schedule of the 24-hour news cycle.

Rail all we want; Murdoch is Captain of the Stinking Ship.
FOX is the purveyor of FCC-approved misinformation,
but networks are in this way worst of all:

Infotainment silk-and-velvet-clad bobbleheads who
smile as they read you the story of a deadly car crash.
Treat politicians like celebrities and fawn over them.
Never ask a question that cannot be answered by
a sound byte, scripted before the interview started.

William Randolph Hearst is grinning in his yellow grave.

© 2012 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

For The Sunday Whirl (wordle below, thanks Brenda!) and also at my poetic port of call, Poets United.