It's my personal soapbox, a place for me to express thoughts and feelings, musings and rants, reflections and recollections; to have fun with words -- about things spiritual, environmental, social, political, economic, and, from time to time, personal. And of course about peace. Soapboxes are in public places (as London's legendary Hyde Park) on purpose, and so I invite conversations with you, for it is through civil discourse that we can gain some perspective on the seeming chaos of these changing times and learn together how to shape a positive future for ourselves, our communities, and the generations to come.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Dead and Alive

Dead and Alive

April blooms burst forth,
a baize ablaze with sunshine.
Life in the Valley of Death.

Celestial Promise


Celestial Promise

White puffs of promise
dabble heaven’s blue canvas.
Parched limbs stretch skyward.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Walls Remember

I was just stepping off the curb to cross a street on the way to the post office this morning when I saw it…and came to an abrupt halt. Transfixed, I watched for several minutes.

A monster of metal, a modern-day T. Rex, grabbed a mouthful of the back end of the 88-year-old apartment building at 120 Tilton Avenue, chewed it up, swiveled to its left, spat it out onto a growing pile of razed ruins, and then swiveled back to take another bite. And another. And another. And yet another. As the worn and dingy building disappeared bit by bit from the rear, door frames, window panes, bathtubs, toilets, wooden chairs, slabs of stucco, and weathered timbers rained down – twisted, broken, crumpled – onto the rubble pile. And, bit by bit, green trees and blue sky came into view beyond.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Ferguson and Such: Root Cause

Michael Nagler is exactly right in his commentary on “Beyond Ferguson”.

Without getting at the root cause of such brutal incidents, the traumas and tragedies will never go away. Focusing on the details of one incident or another as if a legal investigation would reveal some sort of truth is like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Also, an essential part of getting at the root cause is “the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society,” as Nagler quotes Martin Luther King, Jr., as saying with regard to the Vietnam War.

Violence, militarism, and materialism, I believe, are a consequence of our cultural worldview of separation, fear, and thus the need for protection from one another (and from nature, as well, by the way). On the contrary, the best protection is connection, not separation.

Monday, November 17, 2014

It ain't over 'til it's over....

Friend Geoff Ainscow was instrumental in getting Sunnyvale, California’s, gun safety ordinance passed by voters overwhelmingly last year. Geoff’s remarkable story of citizen action, and the incident that sparked him to “get mad as hell and not take it, anymore,” is chronicled at the website of the Conscious Elders Network.

Of course, the inevitable resistance from local and national gun rights advocates continues in the courts. See the article in today’s San Jose Mercury News.