Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Poets United Midweek Motif ~ Independence

Why is independence important?
(Tim Hall Cultura Getty Images)

“Independence is a complex word in a foreign tongue.

 To resist occupation, whether you're a nation or merely a woman, you must understand the language of your enemy. Conquest and liberation and democracy and divorce are words that mean squat, basically, when you have hungry children and clothes to get out on the line and it looks like rain.” 

“From birds she learned how to sing; from cats she learned 
a form of dangerous independence.” 

It is very nearly impossible... to become an educated person in a country 
so distrustful of the independent mind. 


Midweek Motif ~ 

Many of our countries have holidays that celebrate gaining independence from foreign rule, and many of us also have rites--formal and informal--related to gaining independence.  Some of these are about our countries and ~ more importantly ~ some of these are about us as individuals and members of groups.   

What is your experience of independence? 
How might you describe independence to someone who has never encountered it?
How are your beliefs about independence reflected in how you see nature?  
Or vice versa: How is your view of nature reflected in your beliefs about independence?

Your Challenge: Let your new poem answer one of the four questions above.

Johnny Cash - As Long As the Grass Shall Grow

Excerpt from "The Declaration of Independence" 
by  Thomas Jefferson

We hold these truths to be self-evident:

that all men are created equal,
that they are endowed by their Creator
with certain unalienable rights,
that among these are life, liberty
and the pursuit of happiness.


Related Poem Content Details

I know what the caged bird feels, alas!
    When the sun is bright on the upland slopes;
When the wind stirs soft through the springing grass,
And the river flows like a stream of glass;
    When the first bird sings and the first bud opes,
And the faint perfume from its chalice steals—
I know what the caged bird feels! 

I know why the caged bird beats his wing 
    Till its blood is red on the cruel bars;   
For he must fly back to his perch and cling   
When he fain would be on the bough a-swing; 
    And a pain still throbs in the old, old scars   
And they pulse again with a keener sting— 
I know why he beats his wing! 

I know why the caged bird sings, ah me, 
    When his wing is bruised and his bosom sore,— 
When he beats his bars and he would be free; 
It is not a carol of joy or glee, 
    But a prayer that he sends from his heart’s deep core,   
But a plea, that upward to Heaven he flings— 
I know why the caged bird sings!
mud mothers

Related Poem Content Details

the children of haiti
are not mythological
. . . . 
we are a living dead example
of what happens to warriors who
in lieu of fighting for white men's countries
dare to fight
for their own lives
during carnival
we could care less
about our bloated empty bellies
where there are voices
we are dancing
where there is vodou
we are horses
where there are drums
we are possessed
with joy and stubborn jamboree
but   . . . .
(Read the rest HERE)


Please share your new poem using Mr. Linky below and visit others in the spirit of the community—
(Next week Sumana's Midweek Motif will be ~ Movement.)


  1. Thanks for another interesting prompt

  2. I confess, swimming in thoughts and gratitude. My poem hasn't jelled yet, but I read yours anyway. Amazing, moving poems. And now I go to tutor until noon. As the day brightens, I will find my way. Have a good and happy day!

  3. A timely prompt, and much-needed. Will stay at my desk this morning till a poem tumbles out. In Canada, we have a people whose independance is long overdue and will not wait much longer.

  4. Love the prompt!
    Sympathy is one of my all time favorite poems.

  5. I'm visiting the home where I was raised and was inspired by this motif and swimming lessons. Swimming has always been a big part of my life and a symbol of independence. Thanks!

  6. This theme resonated, Susan!! Thank you.

  7. I love the quotes, especially the last one.

  8. Thank you, Susan

  9. Im actually home sick so will get a chance to say "hi" and read some poetry. Love to y'all

  10. I enjoyed this prompt and your quotes. Inspired to write a second one.Thanks Susan.

  11. Thank you everyone. My heart is full, and yet it keeps accepting more. Sara, I fixed your link. Until next time, then, LOVE.

  12. Hi Friends,
    Salute to the Fourth of July!
    Congrats to US-friends.
    See from me a little piece of love, little belated.


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