28 August 2016

Stationary Waves

Stationary waves are a predictable phenomena caused by jumps in the contour of a riverbed.

Small-town America was abruptly abandoned about forty years ago. Angry tribes of white-complected people are prepared for battle with proverbial pitchforks.

Cresting stationary wave in the Otter Tail River
below Fergus Falls Dam

The embittered people who remain in largely insular, hardscrabble towns range from dysfunctionally depressed to putting on a happy face for tourists who visit their town to escape the stress of some modicum of economic viability in pockets of urban America.

Stationary Waves is a poem that includes a cresting stationary wave found in a river that surges through a small town in western Minnesota like a pulsing blood vessel, overlain by my knee-jerk impressions of a town in decline.

Stationary Waves
Fergus Falls, 28 August 2016

Naked bedrock
punctuates history
like a stationary wave
reveals a shameful deceit

Black flies circumnavigate
the Fergus Falls imbecile
like delinquent exoplanets
orbit a fading red dwarf

Colonies of pickup trucks
permanently stuck in reverse
back into empty spaces
in overflow parking

26 August 2016

Women’s Equality Day

Vintage ERA YES button

Congress hasn't done much for women in the past 45 years.

Today is Women’s Equality Day.

In 1971 the 66th Congress designated August 26 as Women’s Equality Day at the behest of social activist and women's rights icon Rep. Bella Abzug (D-NY).

Sadly we'll endure the inept 114th Congress, paralyzed by small-minded ideologues, until January 3, 2017. It is my fervent hope the political pendulum in Congress will swing back toward people-centric equality issues.

Sadly the flurry of #WomensEqualityDay tweets on my Twitter timeline was exceeded by #NationalDogDay. I've a soft spot for dogs, but I love women. And I'm passionate about equal rights for all.

The #WomensEqualityDay tweets reminded of the ERA YES button I got just a few years into my political awakening in the late 1970s. The protracted struggle of Equal Rights Amendment has shaped my political world-view.

Progress is rarely revolutionary and rarely sudden. Progress is almost always a long and determined slog.