Thursday, April 30, 2020

National Poetry Month: Celebrating Poetry in Motion at Transit Museum at Grand Central


Hundreds of short poems have been displayed on  train stations, subway cars and buses for over 25 years thanks to a collaboration between the Poetry Society of American and the Metropolitan Transit Authority.

This year I highlight the poetry of native american poet Sherman Alexie with this verse from Crazy Horse Speaks:




I wear the color of my skin
like a brown paper bag
wrapped around a bottle.
Sleeping between
the pages of dictionaries
your language cuts
tears holes in my tongue
until I do not have strength
to use the word "love."
What could it mean
in this city where everyone is
Afraid-of-Horses?


Sherman Alexie was born in Spokane, Washington and is a poet, novelist and filmmaker and his works reflect his experience as a native American whose genealogy includes a number of different tribes.  

Sherman Alexie from npr.com
For NPR broadcast interview, click here 


To view my prior articles celebrating the power of poetry click here. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

A Must Read Letter from a Guilford Connecticut resident on Adjusting to Virus Social Distancing

This blogger is indebted to the New York Times for publishing the following  letter written to the Editor of New York Times and published on Thursday, March 19, 2020.


We can optimize our social distancing time by writing
memoirs, collecting family photos and reaching out
to our friends and neighbors and display gratitude and compassion,
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images 

 To the Editor:

 Come on, boomers! We grew up in the 1950s, hid under desks during air raid drills, suffered through the Vietnam War. Mostly we have enjoyed safety and prosperity. Now we are the elders. (Just look at the presidential candidates!) It’s our time to lead by example.

 Don’t grab all of the toilet paper on the shelves. (Store owners, set limits, two per customer.) Don’t veg out in front of the bad news being recycled on TV, whether Fox or MSNBC. Read your morning New York Times, do the crossword puzzle and then move on.

 Are you self-isolating? These are good times to be alone and quiet, go inward, seek meaning from the paths our lives have taken, write memoirs, gather family photographs. Hunkering down does not mean hiding. Send out positive messages. Wave and smile from the front porch. Grow flowers. Bake bread and cookies for the neighbors who shop for you. Wouldn’t we rather burn out than rust out?

Find a way to make a positive difference in your community. Rock on!

 Susan Coley Leonard
 Guilford, Conn.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Super Bowl Fifty Four, Palindromic Sunday, Janus the Roman God of Transitions and Change, the Resurgent Kansas City Chiefs and What We Can Expect in the Decade(s) to Come

February 2, 2020, the date of Superbowl Sunday, can be written as 02/02/2020.

 So it's a palindromic Sunday,  meaning that the numbers read the same whether read forward or backward

The last time we had a palindromic day in all formats was 909 years ago on 11/11/1111.

Statue representing Janus Bifrons in the Vatican Museums.
Janus is the God of Beginnings, gates, transitions, time duality 
doorways, passages and endings (courtesy of Wikipedia licensed under 
the Creative Commons)

This phenomenon and the date is, by coincidence,  juxtaposed to the month of January which is 'two faced.' It is, by convention, named after the Roman God Janus who was depicted on coins and statues as having one neck and one head with two faces each facing in an opposite direction. . So, one face is looking backwards at the past--- to last month as well as the last decade(s) and the other is facing toward the future-- next month and decade, etc.

Statues of Janus were traditionally placed at the entrance of homes and at gates to ward off any evil that might enter.


For those of us who tuned into to Super Bowl 54, we witnessed a remarkable comeback and victory of the Kansas City Chiefs over the the San Francisco 49'ers, the former led by the dazzling quarterback Patrick Mahomes.

Final score: Kansas City 31 San Francisco 20 with   KC scoring  3 touchdowns in 5 minutes

We have to 'look back' exactly 50 years to 1970 to when the Chiefs won their only Superbowl title.

Kansas City, then, led by quarterback Len Dawson, defeated the Minnesota Vikings 23-7.

So, in a sense,  The 'Superbowl  4'  team had to look forward 50 years to repeat the performance. In essence, Superbowl 4 endured 49 hapless years for a repeat performance.

So, what can we learn from the first decades of the the 21st Century.... as we look back from 2020.......What  clues can we discern in anticipating and predicting what we can reasonalbly expect to occur in the the next decade(s)....looking forward?

To learn about the next major Mega-trend, perhaps the most important Megatrend of our times--  already making its appearance on the gloabl horizon---look for my next article which will shortlty address glaringly and blatantly remarkable phenomena--- we as humans will be coerced to address NOW and in the decade to come to assure the survival of humanity. .