Perhaps I should have waited until I figured out how to do this thing with inserting audio clips. Poetry, should be heard, not read -- so much of the meaning is in the intonation and the rhythm.
"The song is in the singing and life is in the living..."There is an aspect of the tragedy at Nickel Mines which is radically different from Columbine. Not in the ugly evil of the deeds done, but what happened afterwards.
The difference is in the reaction of the Amish -- they do not and here did not translate grief into revenge. In fact they reached out with condolences to the family of the murderer.
I don't want to wax eloquent on this -- it is too easy to slip into a mode where one begins to feed upon the grief and sorrow of others. This also constitutes part of what lies at the heart of the pestilence.
Instead, I'd like to recommend that you read a concise and sensitive piece Sally Kohn has written, "What the Amish can teach America."
11 Ugly Evil in the Land
To drive a stake into heartless pestilence,
requires intelligence and innocence.
The deed must be done slowly but fast.
The hammer must be silver and the wood -- ash!
This "dracula" is more than one wicked prince,
sitting and sucking his after dinner mints.
When Gaia weeps and all her children scream
in flickering lights from glowing screens...
Who then delights in such a bloody feast?
Is it you and I?
Are we then that ugly beast
of which the prophet speaks?
I'm afraid it's so!
I've seen it writ in the wind, the rain and snow.
The time has come to shout as loud as we can,
there is an ugly evil in the land...
Imagine what the world would be like today if our reaction to the Terrible Tuesday of 9/11 had been one where we had reached out to the world, seeking justice of course, but not revenge?
Normally it is useless to ask, "What if?" But here I think it is valid. We have not seen the last of senseless deeds. We must drive the stake into the heart of the pestilence -- not to kill but to change.