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

Tag Archives: Peace

Poets United asked for poems regarding “this time of year,” the regrets, the emotions that run high. In my case, so many bridges have been burned at the holidays… tempers in my circles flare, often to the detriment of even long-term relationships. And so I offer this poem. Peace, Amy

Repairers of the Breach

When all is said and done and
undone, then soddered together once more,
the saddest truth is this:

You’ll never go back in time.
No mulligans on misspeaking,
no second tries on bitter partings.

Bridges burned are seldom rebuilt,
the breach often irreparable, final…
or so it seems.

So strive to remember that God gave us
two ears and one mouth – a ratio
reflecting God’s common sense.

Listen for the resonant truth with respect;
forgive other folks’ harmless blather,
unless it is prejudiced and hateful.

(Sometimes you must walk away from hatred,
homophobia, racism and such, for reasons
of conscience in the face of recalcitrant bigots.)

Try to leave the bridge burning to others.
If the bridge be burnt, let it be for the right reason.
Live in love, as repairers of the breach.

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
Posted at my poetic oasis, Poets United. Proud to be a member!


The Balancing Act of Life

Hovering before a feeder full of suet,
the hummingbird’s wings beat so fast,,
she appears motionless. Magic.

Nearby, a birdhouse swivels on its chain
in the autumn breeze, abandoned for
the rapidly approaching winter.

The bees are past “Last Call,” so drunk
they’ll sting anything. They dawdle near
the last bloom of a faded coral rose in
a pointless quest for long-gone nectar.

Geese overheard, perfectly aligned,
their kazoo music a comic horn section.
Yet, behold their strength in numbers,
their impeccable, strategic teamwork.
They know travail; they seek only survival.

The eloquent, full-throated conversation of
lark and sparrow, cuckoo and crow
owl and cricket, long since stifled by
the reality of the season. One misses
their conversation over morning coffee
or evening cabernet. Now we watch the mist
mask and reveal, mask and reveal the Moon,
pee-a-boo in the night sky.

We’ll take in the birdfeeders soon, our fingers
deftly cleaning all crevices before storage for Spring.
We will look for the few creatures of the deep freeze:
Deer, gratefully nibbling apples we left on the
low-hanging branches, rabbits scavenging
what they can, squirrels twirling in the trees.

This balancing act of life serves as show and
as life lesson: Hard work and beauty are equals
in Nature. Symmetry. The dance. The point.

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

For The Sunday Whirl, with thanks to Brenda for the Wordle: Bees, balance, cleaning, coral, point, strength, finger, motionless, eloquent, rapidly, swivel, safety. Also at my poetic home away from home, Poets United.


Thirteen Ways of Looking at Men (for We Write Poems, with a nod to Wallace Stevens)

I.          They’re different in certain ways, but what’s in common reigns.
II.        Through the bottom of a shot glass, darkly.
III.      Millions are fathers deserving of respect, when respect is due.
IV.       Sometimes, they are bullies or abusive and deserving of no respect at all.
V.         As leaders of our nation; therefore, we should elect more women to level the playing field.
VI.      Warily.
VII.     As warmongers and war profiteers… and troops who actually have to fight the battles.
VIII.   While wearing rose-colored glasses (which you will eventually lose).
IX.        As friends who are with you no matter what the circumstance, especially if they are gay and you are one of those straight girls who just loves them to death (like me).
X.          As husbands or committed partners – in which case, keep your hands off them (straight OR gay!). Monogamy should be honored (and polygamy, well, eeeeeeeew).
XI.         As co-founders of our country, along with the mostly forgotten Founding Mothers.
XII.       As white/Anglo and born to privilege, never having to earn the money they now fight so hard to keep.
XIII.     As people of color who are often overlooked, profiled, or assumed to be criminals, in the US illegally… or born in Indonesia, so he can’t REALLY be president.

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil


Hay(na)kus are a curious little form I found at Poetic Asides.  It’s a variation of the haiku:  Three lines; one word, two words, three words.  No other rules.  My kind of form!  Also at Poets United, our poetry collective. Amy

As Seen On TV

Drug
It’s new!
Ask your doctor

Squandered

Money
is wasted
on the rich

Like a Mighty Stream

Justice
is ensured
only through action

Jesus, Gandhi, King

Peace
cannot flourish
without unconditional love

Mel Gibson’s Passion

Jesus
was not
an action figure

America

Hatred
is not
the new Normal

All poems © 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil


Footprints of Peace (haiku)
Dedicated to Sister Karen Klimczak (1943-2006)

Where is holy ground?
Is it only in a church,
a temple, or mosque?

No, it’s to be found
ev’rywhere beneath our feet
if peace is our guide.

Live out of real love
each of us to another,
forsaking greed, hatred

Holy ground is found
anywhere people will trace
the footprints of peace.

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

I decided that 300 posts is a milestone and wanted not to be my usual snarky self. Here’s the story behind the inspiration for this poem:

Sister Karen began the “Peaceprints” signage campaign in Buffalo, NY. Signs popped up all over town, “I Leave Peace Prints,” signs with doves, putting out a positive message of unconditional love. She worked in a halfway house for drug offenders who had served their time. Sadly, she was murdered by one of the residents when she surprised him as he was going through her room. Although her death was senseless and sadly ironic, the signs proliferated in her memory and still stand today. Rest in peace, Sister Karen, and thanks for the love.

Posted at the poets’ collective, Poets United.


The Greatest Aim of Humankind (an acrostic)

Pursue the beating of swords into ploughshares
Etch onto windowpanes, “The time has come”
Aiming to embrace all peoples as one family
Chanting, not dogma, but “Love,” in many tongues
Everyone will cry out, “Enough of war, time to live!”

© Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

For a new site, Poetic Bloomings, to the prompt “a goal-oriented poem.” Please check out Marie and Walt’s new prompt site – I think you’ll love their pace, their vibe. This is also, as always, posted to my oasis from all chaos, Poets United.

Peace, Amy