wage peace

In remembrance of September 11th, 2001, this poem by Judyth Hill:

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WAGE PEACE

Wage peace with your breath.

Breathe in firemen and rubble,
breathe out whole buildings and flocks of red wing blackbirds.

Breathe in terrorists
and breathe out sleeping children and freshly mown fields.

Breathe in confusion and breathe out maple trees.

Breathe in the fallen and breathe out lifelong friendships intact.

Wage peace with your listening: hearing sirens, pray loud.

Remember your tools: flower seeds, clothes pins, clean rivers.

Make soup.

Play music, memorize the words for thank you in three languages.

Learn to knit, and make a hat.

Think of chaos as dancing raspberries,

imagine grief
as the outbreath of beauty
or the gesture of fish.

Swim for the other side.

Wage peace.

Never has the world seemed so fresh and precious:

Have a cup of tea and rejoice.

Act as if armistice has already arrived.
Celebrate today.

***

wagepeaceperfect

poster calligraphed by Mary Teichman

Judyth Hill’s six books of poetry include Men Need Space, Black Hollyhock, First Light, and A Presence of Angels. Her newest collection of poems, Dazzling Wobble is forthcoming from a TBA press in Fall, 2010, and her newest book, The Sensual Chocolatier, is forthcoming from Gibbs Smith Publishing, in Fall, 2010. “Wage Peace” is reprinted here by permission of the author.

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7 thoughts on “wage peace

  1. This poem has just been translated into Spanish!

    Haz la paz
    de Judyth Hill
    Traducción de Elisa Serna

    Haz la paz con tu respiración.

    Aspira bomberos y escombros,
    Espira edificios enteros y bandadas de mirlos de alas rojas.

    Aspira terroristas
    y espira niños durmiendo y campos recién segados.

    Aspira confusión y espira arces.

    Aspira a los caídos y espira amistades intactas de toda una vida.

    Haz la paz con tu escucha: sirenas, reza en voz alta.

    Recuerda tus armas: semillas de flores, pinzas de ropa, ríos limpios.

    Haz sopa.

    Pon música, memoriza la palabra gracias en tres idiomas.

    Aprende a tejer, y haz un gorro.

    Piensa que el caos son frambuesas danzantes,
    imagina la pena
    como la espiración de la belleza
    o el gesto del pez.

    Nada en dirección contraria.

    Haz la paz.

    Nunca se antojó el mundo tan fresco y precioso:

    Toma una taza de té y alégrate.

    Actúa como si el armisticio hubiera llegado.

    Celebra hoy.

    Like

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