Before Marching Today

People from every continent on earth, except for Antarctica, are marching today for common sense gun control. I’m joining the march in Tallahassee, Florida. We’ll start at Ruby Diamond Auditorium and march to the historic Florida Capitol building.

Right now I’m taking advantage of a bench beneath the spreading arms of a graceful oak tree in front of Ruby Diamond. Hundreds of folks are milling around, carrying signs, discussing the possibilities for real change in our gun laws.

Are you marching today? If so, where?

Peace, people.

A World With Guns Poetry Readings

Occasionally I write poetry, and when the spirit moves me these poems deal with the horrors of gun violence. When I came across a piece on Facebook about a series of poetry reading events across Florida to keep the conversation surrounding gun deaths front and center, I thought to myself, “Oh, I’d do this if an event was scheduled for Tallahassee.”

Scrolling down the list I read:

Oh. I see there is one here. Deep breath. Myself isn’t feeling all that cocky right now.

The thing is, I don’t know if any of my pieces are good enough to present. I’ve only ever read my own works in front of an audience once or twice, and then I shook so hard my teeth rattled.

What say you, friends? Is this one of those things I should allow to fall by the wayside, or should I jump in with both feet? Awaiting the wisdoms of my readers, especially the poets among you. Please be honest. I’d rather not make a fool of myself at this event.

Here’s one for your consideration:

Guns in Church

Will we take our guns to church now?

Jesus take the wheel, but leave me my pistol

Dylan Roof opened fire in a South Carolina prayer meeting

Now more dead occupy the pews in Texas

Just wondering which firearm goes best with Psalms.

Yea, tho I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil,

For I am armed with an automatic weapon.

No doubt lawmakers will offer meaningless thoughts and prayers

Their mantra sounding weaker by the hour

Who will answer for these deaths?

And here is another:

Guns and Thorns

the fetishists have cried,

“leave our guns alone!”

when no one has called

for their removal.

paranoid fools who fail

to see or care, cry time

and time again that any

move breeds futility

while still more innocents

die and we offer up only

thoughts and prayers.

Peace, people.

Dinner with Ms. NRA

For several months now I’ve been attending MeetUp functions with women in my area. Various members of the group get together for wine or lunch. Sometimes we go for leisurely walks and visit historic landmarks. I always enjoy myself.

I’m beginning to get to know some of the women who attend, and find some of us have a great deal in common. On the whole, we tend to be a fairly progressive group. Even those that tend to be more conservative politically are appalled by the antics of our current potus.

One evening last week seven of us met for wine and dinner at a local restaurant. I knew three of the women in attendance, but three were new to MeetUp.

One of the first timers bristled a bit when the talk turned to the need for action on gun control. The shootings in Parkland, Florida, on Valentine’s Day are still very much on our minds.

“Well!” she huffed. “I’m a member of the NRA, and we can’t ban assault rifles.”

I restrained myself–you all would’ve been proud of me, but she also announced that she was carrying (a gun, I suppose, but might’ve been drugs, the terminology is similar), so maybe it was fear and not restraint that kept me silent.

We turned the talk away from guns, and someone else mentioned the Me Too movement. Again this woman spoke up, “Just ridiculous. These women parading around with hats shaped like vaginas…”

“I have one of those. I wear it proudly,” I said.

“Well, it’s so vulgar and extreme,” she countered.

“Sometimes, we have to be extreme to make a point,” someone else added.

The conversation was steered away again, and we continued to drink our wine and snack on appetizers. We even found things we had in common with Ms. NRA. I don’t want to know if she voted for trump. I don’t want to discuss women’s issues with her. I definitely don’t want to take up gun control when she’s in the room. But, if she’s at any future MeetUps I’ll strike up a conversation with her. Maybe I’ll wear my pussy hat.

Peace, people.

Calibration

Measuring the distance, accounting for wind direction and speed,
He set his cap for perfection, but consoled himself with need.
The targets seemed to waver, concentric circles in the sun,
His aim was true, calibrations right, as he exhaled and shot the gun.
Shocked silence followed sharp reports as bodies began to fall,
He could not reclaim the bullets, nor could the lives lost be recalled.
But the dream played out, his rights upheld to own a deadly weapon
While widows wept and clasped their children, bereft without exception.

Thanks, but no thanks

   
Got this in the mail from the NRA today. Obviously they haven’t read my Facebook timeline.

See the badge in the upper left hand corner? They’ve asked me to place that on my truck, car, boat, or God forbid, on my window at home so that, 

“When your local lawmakers see this shield on NRA vehicles, they see crystal-clear proof that if they push gun regulation, licensing, and prohibition, they risk DEFEAT on Election Day. It’s that promise, backed by NRA membership muscle, that stops gun banners in their tracks.”

Apparently, this shield has…

“…stopped hundreds of schemes to ban your guns and close down gun shows, gun shops, ranges, and hunting lands.”

I own a gun. One of these days I’ll learn to use the darned thing, but I refuse to become part of an organization that plays on our fears in order to pump up their membership. 

I refuse to belong to a group that fought against common sense gun regulations following the shooting of innocent schoolchildren in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, a group that instead said the answer to such tragedies was to arm more people.

The NRA was founded with good intentions, but radical organization leadership and a focus on political and societal manipulation has twisted that goodness into something profane. 

I’ll take that sticker. There’s a great stinky place just inside my trashcan in need of an NRA endorsement.

Peace, people!

  

In Other News

The day is coming

And it isn’t far off

When a mass shooting

Will fall under the heading:

In Other News

Children in a schoolhouse

Gunned down by 

Delusional sufferer of 

Schizophrenia.

In Other News

Open carry fanatic sends

Kroger shoppers scrambling

For safety. Four dead.

In Other News

Theatre goers attacked

By rampaging shooter.

Lobby becomes morgue.

In Other News

Onlookers cheer as

Gunman attacks those

Of a different faith.

In Other News.



I am not anti-gun. I am pro-common sense gun regulation. Peace, please, people.