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Sunday, March 27, 2011


by Buff Whitman-Bradley

In the break between storms
I go out into the front yard
To smell the blossoms
Of the ceanothus

These are gloomy times
Rain day after day after day
But seasonal sadness
Is the least of our problems

Japan decimated and radioactive
From earthquake tsunami meltdowns
Iraq Afghanistan Libya
The objects of lethal US affections

All over the world
The stench of rotting economies
Hundreds of millions in agony
While the buzzardly few lick their chops

Yesterday in icy rain
Two thousand of us angry fools
Marched and shivered in the streets
For freedom justice and peace

This morning the scent of ceanothus
Does not offer comfort or refuge
But sharpens the sense of injustice
Magnifies the impatience with oppression

A pause for a few aromatic whiffs
A perfumed interlude for re-imagining
The fragrant possible world
Then back into the fray

Buff Whitman-Bradley's poetry has appeared in many print and online journals.  With his wife Cynthia he is co-producer/director of the award-winning documentary film, Outside In,  and co-editor of the forthcoming book About Face: GI Resisters Turn Against War (PM Press, 2011).  He is also co-producer/director of the documentary Por Que Venimos.