How to Write a Poem to change the World

‘I want to change the world,’ said the young poet
‘with a poem that makes you think
long after reading it.

You don’t feel like you were lectured
but something subtle crept into your heart
made a hole that penetrated
all you thought you once were sure of
so you started asking questions.

Questions about what you could do to make
the world more peaceful as one individual
in one family in a number of communities
and in a neighborhood and a country.

And when you reached that point of asking your questions
the hole in your heart became
something that you climbed into, and healed with an action
and whilst your action might not be a poem
it could be a song or a class that you took
at school as a teacher or
maybe you had an opportunity
to do something enormous like make an invention
or start a project, perhaps very small, perhaps very large,
that would heal the world
and thinking back you felt changed because the poem did something
powerful whilst you were reading, it empowered you.’

And the young poet went looking for her poem that could
change the world – with a heart full of love that overflowed, and a strong desire to avoid lecturing others when she was full of questioning holes she herself had to fill- by looking at the poems and poets that had changed her. She sought poetry seeds for a peaceful poet’s tree.

To be continued….

(c) June Perkins

The World is Singin’ its Blues

guitarboy2
Guitar Boy by June Perkins

The world is singin’ its blues
askin’ for a bit of time to heal
askin’ why it’s so hard to feel
that nothin’ we do is gonna make
peace be real

askin’ for a DJ who understands
the need for peace
who can give us some
musical release
to bleed out the fears
dress them in a mother’s tears

The world is ringin’ out its questions
why, oh why’s a piece of land
or your religion
something to kill or die for
and why are people so quick
to tie their fate to
those noose of hate?

askin’ for a DJ who can change the down beat
into an upbeat
bring some kind of optimism into play
dress that sorrow
in a technicolour tomorrow

The world is singin’ its blues
askin’ for a bit of time to heal
askin’ why it’s so hard to feel
that nothin’ we do is gonna make
peace be real

(c) June Perkins, words and image.

Handle with Care

abstracinggreen

the morning news unsettles
and reminds
for many there is no luxury
to look for daily balance

only the beginning of an end

lives blasted out of the sky
children bombed on the beach
apocalyptic movies due
at the cinema soon

and on the way to when healing arrives
the places where there is the

beginning of a beginning

every moment
is now handle with care

the places where tear drops
bomb the hope just out of reach

longing for the time
visions of one world
might be in the real world soon

the temporary bandages we put on things
attempted treaties delicately achieved
are never enough

when will they make way for the time
when unity might
beam its sunlight
through leaves of green
to blind the apocalypse of now?

(c) June Perkins

The Green Broom

greenbroom
Creative Commons, Matteo Riva

Voice of the Bab’s Servant Mubarak

Sweeping, sweeping
Clearing pathways
For Him to walk on
Making a befitting place for Him
To be with Khadijih.

Sweeping, sweeping
Another auburn
Autumn leaf
Falling
Still not here

But assuring her
He will return
For each and all

Winter trees
Pencil like gray outlines
Fragile like her weeping.

But I know
He will return.

(c) June Perkins

Image Credit: Creative Commons Matteo Riva

Song for Martha

for Martha Root

By a rainbow tree in Honolulu
Rainbow languages are gently flowing
Singing, “Martha board your next canoe”
Whether she knows the next bend’s turning
Her heart is filled with a simple yearning

She is drawn to follow every rainbow
Searching the mysteries of its soul
On every continent she can only sing
Filled to the brim with her love of Him
Drawn on and on to where the next path is going

The red hues of her sacrifice growing
Her will with others does not always intertwine
But still on and on she rainbow dances
On boats, canoes, ferries aeroplanes and trains

Each stop is a spirit travel line
That feels itself drawn to the divine
On a train bound for glory
There’s the beginning of her next story

In each rioting mob within places of unrest
She tries to see glimmers of light
The dawn of orange and yellow in her sight
In her pale blue silk dress and brown overcoat
Accompanied by one small suitcase full mostly of books

She’ll travel the endless greens
On her way to visit Queen Marie.


(c) June Perkins

(Published in Bahai World Order)

Weaving Sunset

smallweaver
Weaving Sunset – June Perkins

Wishing
for sunset
to weave me
into memory
of her triumphant story

Never
forgetting
songs of sore fingers
waiting for mercy’s respite

She
is sunset’s daughter
sunrise’s sister
weaving freedom’s future

(c) June Perkins

 

Blue Bonnets

You can find my poetry and that of people who inspire me at Ripple Poetry.

This is my latest offering.

 

Funerals like rain
Fall from clouds
Young boys say ‘goodbye’
As father’s lowered to the ground

Mother stands alone
Tears become her shroud
Funeral goers utter not a sound.

She hears blue guitar strums
She’s pounding melancholy’s drums.

Texas and Tully are so far apart
Yet they share skies
Where hawks and ibis fly

Storms and troubles rock both their shores
Warn their people to depart.

She tells her children
the legend of the Texas Blue Bonnet flower

A young girl gave up her warrior doll,
The last reminder of family,
To invoke a higher power.

She burnt her warrior doll
Its head dress of blue feathers
Offered up its ashes
To the North, South, East and West Winds
So hunger and loss it would tether.

She cried herself to sleep.
Let her memory weep.

When she awoke
Never before seen flowers,
Clambered the mountains
Birds made their bowers
People drank from hope’s fountains.

The mother with the shroud
Inside’s the little girl
Who’ll burn her own warrior doll
She knows what must be done

She’ll let her dreams unfurl.
She’ll wait till all sleep then
Pull out her favourite guitar
Take those blue cords
Burn them, banish them

Scatter their ashes,
North, South, East and West.

The dry season will begin
Floods have had their fun
A looking- to-the-future music
will now begin to grow.

By June Perkins

blue bonnets
Herself- Flickr Creative Commons

Mother Made it So

Mother Made it So
 

I was a well groomed young lady because my mother always made it so.

She stressed ironed clothes, well brushed hair, and the best selection of hand-me-downs and St Vincent Wear, with the occasional new bargain thrown in.

Early photo albums always show her well dressed, but not conventionally so.
Sometimes she’s in saris, other times she’s in mini dresses with bee-hive hair.
Sometimes she’s in a grass skirt with a bikini top (because it’s Australia) ready for national dress events.

Make-up carefully applied, long lashes, now she looks like a Supreme.
Later there are leopard print clothes and bright vibrant purples and blues.
She’s usually slim, sometimes a little well- rounded, but only for a short time, then she’s slim again.

She moves (on a budget) with the times.
She moves with new geographies, Australia, not Papua New Guinea now.
She was generous with everything, including my time.
I was often the unpaid baby sitter for her friends and an old lady who once lived next door.

She was adopting the old ones to remind her of her mother.
She was making sure I knew how to clean, wash and cook and care for the old and the young.
She was taking me charity collecting for Red Cross, and we were running from big dogs guarding houses that don’t want charity collectors or anyone else at their door!

I was making mistakes, putting sugar with rice, wearing clothes that were out of fashion plus drawing on my sneakers.
I was trying to learn.
Patience has never been her strong point. Generosity has.

I didn’t know how to absorb what she was trying to teach me so, often I learnt something other than what she intended.

I learnt some people take too much from generous souls;
you can make a young boy leave his wheel chair with sheer will and lots of physical and emotional therapy and
you can change your future no matter how life begins.

She never gave up on the underdogs.
She was and still is critical, caring, and ferocious, all in one day.
She is my mother and she made me so.

My latest contribution to ABC Open.  A new project begins  Who Shaped Me

Image Credit: Mum from the Family Archives

 

Look to the Future

bluegirlImage:  Blue Girl – Look to the Future

Reflecting on the Image.

The blue girl looks to the future

through the outline of the branches.

She is dissolving into nature.

Nature is absorbed in her dreams.

In the future they are one and in

the past they are one.

From the dust she arrived

and by the leaves she is buried.

In the present they are separated

then reconnected through

the imagination…

(c) June Perkins