From Wikipedia commons (

I am dedicating this post to Heather Heyer who could have been me or a friend of mine. May your spirit be remembered.

“If you aren’t outraged, you aren’t paying attention.” -Heather Heyer

I have been studying the differences in right and left wing American media for a long time. I grew up in a Republican home and my father and I had a fierce argument about the so-called “swift boat veterans for truth” in 2004 that resulted in him physically attacking me and we didn’t speak for two years.

I struggled to understand why a man with a Ph.D…

There’s this meme: “Give Trump a chance they said…3 years later the whole country is unemployed, locked in the house, wiping their asses with coffee filters.”

Lately I have been thinking about the complex road that America went on to get to this particular moment, and my thoughts still spin in circles. Reading the news when it comes especially to immigration, the climate or any aspect of the environment, not to mention race, domestic violence and/or a global pandemic can cause me to disassociate. …

open letter to my white sisters

(who I know cringe to be referred to as ‘white’)

-November 5, 2018

in this country, thick with hidden


I discovered only recently

your/our right to equal pay was won

by black women and by black men

fighting for civil rights.

I majored in history in college, but still no one

told me a white congressman

named Howard Smith

reportedly thought

the best way to forever


the civil rights bill was

to tack women on to it.

He later said he had not meant it

as a joke…

that was after an…

of nests and drainpipes

While outside birds building nests in drain pipes knew nothing of coming rain. -Naomi Shihab Nye

Drainpipes knew nothing of the coming nests

Rain, outside the building, in —

Knew, while coming, of the birds.

Birds knew of drainpipes.

Birds knew of nothing.

Birds knew of coming outside.

Birds knew, in buildings, nothing outside nests in rain.

Rain knew of the while.

Rain knew of the coming nothing.

Rain knew of pipes.

Rain knew the outside birds.

Rain knew of drains in coming

nests — from nothing

consent, brutally judged

Mr. Kavanaugh, I would say it’s the same ancient impulse —

flesh pushing against unwilling flesh

that seeks to ram home the point

about the uterus, too, being a place

to be filled without consent

I shrank inside myself and smiled. I knew it didn’t matter to me anymore after that.

Just think of me as a man I learned to say to people and mean it

Like a man whose body is just a vessel. Not a temple

No sanctimonious worshippers are allowed to wander in here. I’m pretty sure I whispered “leave me alone” out loud

Ms. L and her daughter, S.S., six years old and sweet,
arrived legally in San Diego,
their port of entry.

Fleeing violence “facing near certain death” in the Congo…
Give me your tired, your poor…
“She has a genuine fear.

She is not a criminal. Not a terrorist. She needs help…”
wrote the officer interviewing her.
From her beacon-hand

glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command…
She followed correct procedure for an asylum seeker.
Four days after arrival

they came to take away S.S.
But why?
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand

After S.S. was out of sight…

I saw a baby on the bus

the other day

I mean she was a woman

of some age, but she had adopted a baby’s style

…if a baby were a woman.

nothing rough touched her skin and her face was a moon of innocence

or was it ignorance — which it was

I couldn’t say

she had probably done nothing terrible in her entire life

that she knew was terrible

I remember, as a child, my mother telling me about a strength you could build up in your body…

a woman had held up a car and her child escaped being crushed because this power came to her…

At the time I didn’t know the word she used

there was a cost though — she said

you couldn’t cry a lot in your life or the accumulation of tears could dispel the energy

I remember where we were walking when she said it…sidewalk beside Licton Springs Park…the same street where she crashed a tricycle with my brother on it…


you told me my vote
was for a war criminal
you told me my vote
was for a liar
you told me my candidate
was tainted
you told me my candidate
was fat
you told me my candidate
murders babies
you told me my candidate
is a prostitute to bankers
you told me without my candidate
there would be peace in the Middle East
you told me my candidate was a fracker
you told me my candidate is a fucker a slacker
you told me my candidate was irredeemable
you told me my candidate is unforgivable
you told me my candidate has no heart and no soul is not a woman secretly supports TPP
you told me my candidate is fragile and old
you told me my candidate is unlikeable unlovable
I told you my candidate stands
between democracy & an abyss
you picked the abyss

laura joakimson

have pen, will travel * photos also mine

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