“We want to stay informed about what’s going on in the world, yet absorbing so much negativity leaves us drained and hopeless…we grow numb and disconnected from the suffering of others….(poetry) helps us dive beneath the surface of our lives, and enter a place of wider, wilder, more universal knowing.”
~from the introduction, by James Crews, to his anthology, How To Love The World: Poems of Gratitude and Hope
In that place, there’s a campfire—
And as we gather, our faces
the scent of happy smoke settles in our hair,
nestles into the fibers of jackets, thick sweaters, woven scarves.
This is the smoke of guitar music, laughter, roasted treats.
Not the smoke of destruction, despair.
Here, Ukraine is not a word for a place
nor is Oregon, Moscow, Edinburgh—
Here, close to the fire someone lit for us,
there is no language barrier,
no theft of land or life, no uniforms.
I hand you the bright green scarf knitted just for you.
Someone offers a blue mug of spiced tea for my empty hands
And we talk far into the good night