"The poetry of the ages is an argument with God, so it is said; but not many poets attempt it today. Stanley Moss does." --Hayden Carruth
Of course, that is a "blurb" that is meant to sell poetry books, but I love the description of poetry as an "argument with God." I think having an argument with God is a worthwhile endeavor and I highly recommend letting all your truth fly when you're talking with God. Of course, God's going to win the argument, but he is first and foremost a compassionate God and he's going hear you out and change you in the process. I think that's what I love about poetry, the act of reading or writing it changes me in some way.
If you're reading this blog post right now I truly wish you a meaningful year ahead in 2007 and I am thankful to count you as a friend. Anyway, here's the poem that affected me this morning, the poem I want to share with you on this, the last day of 2006 . . . .
I salute a word, I stand up and give it my chair,
because this one Zulu word, ubuntu,
holds what English takes seven to say:
"the essential dignity of every human being."
I give my hand to ubuntu --
the simple, everyday South African word
for the English mouthful.
I do not know the black Jerusalems of Africa,
or how to dance its sacred dances,
I cannot play Christ's two commandments on the drums:
"Love God" and "Love thy neighbor as thyself."
I do not believe the spirts of the dead
are closer to God than the living,
nor do I take to my heart
the Christlike word ubuntu
that teaches reconciliation
of murderers, torturers, accomplices,
with victims still living.
It is not blood but ubuntu
that is the manure of freedom.