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Friday, February 14, 2014

Exile

You've built your life up
It seems so secure
But then the unexpected appears
And you crash down unsure

The ones you called friends and allies
Turn their backs in your darkest hour
They will even betray you
Drunk with newfound power

Now you must flee
Your life depends on it
Where you are going, God knows
But this current place is unfit

Finally, God guides you to a new place
You can settle and begin to rebuild
But, oh how the hate burns inside you
For the betrayers who wanted you killed

The world says karma will get them
Jesus says turn the other cheek
While the betrayers bask in their malevolent bliss
And your own faith feels so weak

But then something miraculous happens
Your utmost dependence on God brings fruit
His protection and guidance sustain you
And doubt begins to uproot

And when you encounter reminders
Of the life you'd left behind
It hurts to know you can never return
But you are also no longer blind

There are others out there like you
Pushed away or thrown out like the trash
You are an exile
And like the phoenix, you will rise again from the ash



tamtam

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Daily Daily Sing to Mary

This beautiful Catholic hymn I discovered while reading up on the structure of poetry, is attributed to St. Bernard of Cluny. After listening to the hymn being sung, I realized I'd heard it many times before, but only in Spanish. I was not aware that an English version even existed. The Holy Spirit has ways of guiding one to fortuitous places.

Daily, daily sing to Mary, 
Sing, my soul, her praises due. 
All her feasts, her actions worship 
With the heart's devotion true. 
Lost in wond'ring contemplation, 
Be her Majesty confess'd. 
Call her Mother, call her Virgin, 
Happy Mother, Virgin blest. 

She is mighty to deliver. 
Call her, trust her lovingly. 
When the tempest rages round thee, 
She will calm the troubled sea. 
Gifts of heaven she has given, 
Noble Lady, to our race. 
She, the Queen, who decks her subjects 
With the light of God's own grace. 

Sing, my tongue, the Virgin's trophies 
Who for us her Maker bore. 
For the curse of old inflicted, 
Peace and blessing to restore. 
Sing in songs of peace unending, 
Sing the world's majestic Queen. 
Weary not nor faint in telling. 
All the gifts she gives to men.







tamtam

On the Right

Having just returned to the world of blogging, I've had an opportunity to look at my past posts and see how I used to be. There is a most definite right-wing bent to my past posts.

My impression: What in the HELL was I thinking?!

The answer: I wasn't.

I grew up in a rabidly right-wing home, with family who treated Rush Limbaugh's words as Gospel and who never failed to malign anyone who was not conservative or who supported causes that were anything other than conservative ones. And even certain conservative causes, like the pro-life movement, were viewed with suspicion. Naturally, I fell right in step with such devotion. What reason did I have to think different?

Then while on hiatus from blogging, I did what most people never achieve in their lifetimes. I grew up.

And, in the process, I discovered how full of shit right wing America is. Xenophobia is one thing, disenfranchisement, military worship/warhawkism, and straight-up ignorance encouraged by festering Bible-thumping and apocalypse fantasies are other notable traits. But as if that wasn't enough, then came the insane claim that lowering taxes on the wealthy will magically produce jobs. I believed that lie until I began my working life a few months after I'd done the good deed and graduated from college with a degree. Despite having a degree, the only work I could find was a slave-level job in a call center, doing customer service for a major wireless provider.



A good Republican would say, "well, it's better than nothing! You need to work hard and find a better job or better yet, take a second job! Or, better yet, go back to school and get a degree that will earn you money!"

A person with a brain in their head says that there is something very wrong with this picture.

There is nothing like working in a dead-end industry like customer service to see just how bad capitalism, the rabid right with their insane cult-like devotion to Ayn Rand, Israel, and the super wealthy; and the castrated moderate right that calls itself left wing, have failed us. The best and brightest are maligned, while the mediocre and the conformist are held up as ideal; all the while singing in three-part harmony about how wonderful supply-side economics is and you better fucking support the troops!



The result has been a severe uptick in income inequality, more people turning to welfare and food stamps in order to survive, a spike in the cost of living, and two entire generations (mine and the one prior to mine) of working-age people who will never know what it was like to have job security and the income to sustain a middle-class existence.

But of course, nobody in the the government, both the rabidly right wing and the moderately right wing that characterize the Democrat party, will do a damn thing different. Their patrons stand to lose alot of money and influence if any of that should happen.

But now what about those poor people? You know, the ones who need food stamps and Section 8, and Medicaid? Fuck those leeches! CUT CUT CUT! If people die of starvation, who gives a shit-this is AMERICA where you don't need a handout from the government! You pull yourself up by the bootstraps and do it yourself!



By the way, unless you have a means of supporting yourself, it's a wee bit hard to pull yourself up by the bootstraps. Try it sometime.

The funny thing is, you look around Eastern Europe and Latin America, and you can clearly see where the politicians are bought and sold, where there's a tin-pot dictator calling the shots, where crony capitalists hijack the economy, where income inequality is extreme as all getout, where you're constantly under surveillance and the police act with impunity, and think "what a shithole that place is".

It's never occurred to you that we're right on par with those very shitholes you were observing. Perhaps even worse so because our media has done so well hiding what a plutocratic police state America has become.



I can see it right now. Someone from the right will read this post and go "this lazy, brainwashed liberal here is  bitter cuz she doesn't wanna work hard and would rather be a Communist!"

LOL. Communism is just the flip side of your beloved capitalism. One uses material goods for social control, the other reduces humanity to just a commodity to be bought and sold as needed. They both make material goods into god, treat economic activity as a mystical force, and assert itself as a religion (albeit a "secular" one).



I can also see said right winger go "if this communist here doesn't like Amurrika, she should leave".

A thought, I will concede, but a full-on revolt would be alot cheaper and involve less paperwork than moving internationally. Poverty has a way of keeping one tethered.

That, my friends, is why I shredded my Republican registration card and said to hell with you people. Now that I am free of the clutches of the right wing's idiot machine, I will not hesitate to speak out against the right for what they are-the REAL enemies of the state.


tamtam

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The Return of Tamtam

Ladies and gentlemen,

After a nearly three-year hiatus, filled with much change, growth, and challenge, I have returned to the world of blogging at long last.

To commemorate my return, I will post this poem that a friend of mine sent to me a few years ago. I believe it's called The Logical Conclusion, but I've also seen it listed as The Ass Shall Sigh Uninstructed.

When earth's last thesis is copied 
From the theses that went before, 
When idea from fact has departed 
And bare-boned factlets shall bore,
When all joy shall have fled from study 
And scholarship reign supreme; 
When truth shall "baaa" on the hill crests 
And no one shall dare to dream; 

When all the good poems have been buried 
With comment annoted in full 
And art shall bow down in homage 
To scholarship's zinc-plated bull, 
When there shall be nothing to research 
But the notes of annoted notes, 
And Baalam's ass shall inquire 
The price of imported oats; 

Then no one shall tell him the answer 
For each shall know the one fact 
That lies in the special ass-ignment 
From which he is making his tract. 
So the ass shall sigh uninstructed 
While each in his separate book 
Shall grind for the love of grinding 
And only the devil shall look. 

Against the "germanic" system of graduate study and insane specialization in the Inanities. 

-Ezra Pound