Stripes on Singeing Stars We Write Poems #66 Documentary Poem

A white clapboard building,
a dove trapped within; voices,
shots, on green covered hills

A broken door with no handle;
tattered flags once proud
no longer stream with dignity

Snails without shells advance exposed;
storm surges leave barren thoughts

Women carry enemy babies
as blind seasons leave gold

Process notes:
My inspiration was the documentary “The Civil War” by Ken Burns, though I haven’t seen it in almost 2 years, it is still fresh in my memory. Lately I’ve been thinking how mankind really hasn’t evolved much since then, racism and hate are at an all time high, with technology people can send their messages of hate out to the world in a matter of a few seconds. Very sad.


12 responses to “Stripes on Singeing Stars We Write Poems #66 Documentary Poem

  1. Pam,
    I guess the high point of cyberspace is allowing comments and allegations without responsibility. It is a new found freedom that breeds hatred among other things if used negatively. You are right. A pity!

  2. Hank, it is disheartening, but I do consider the source. Seems people who are filled with vitriol are quite unhappy with themselves. It is the only answer I can come up with. However, I know there are good people and bad people. It is a fact of life.

  3. I should like to have seen that film – it obviously made a deep impression on you.

  4. Viv, the documentary is just over 10 hours in length. It originally was broadcast on PBS, a tv station in the states. Two years ago I used the dvds as a learning tool in one of my more advanced classes. My students loved learning this part of my history.

  5. Very nice. The images in the last two couplets are really vivid.

  6. I agree with James and Gautami — the images are very striking and they themselves tell the story, especially the dove trapped within the white clapboard. Peace, and no one hears her.


  7. Nicely done, Pamela. As everyone is saying, the images are incredibly strong. I am saddened with you about the state of humanity, although are incredible sparks of light among us, too. (you) 🙂

  8. Pamela, you are right. Mankind has not evolved much in some ways. One can go back even further than the Civil War. Our weapons just change! Striking images in this poem!

  9. Very powerful images, great final stanza.

  10. Dear Pamela I’m sorry for being so slow, saying my thanks for broaching this documentary presentation. Your poem speaks well for what Ken Burns program presented, simple clear images, AND yet powerful too. Nicely done for a difficult subject.

    I too was deeply moved by his stunning documentary. I remember the night I first saw the film, caught somewhere in the middle, and so so appreciated by their audience the local station here at the end of the pledge presentation just said, “here, forget the normal programming, and we’re just going to rebroadcast the program in whole without interruption right now into the night.” And I just stayed awake and watched it all.

    There’s a time when simple language says more than it commonly would, when it becomes real poetry I think (whatever the form). His film gave that spark. Thank you for beautifully bringing that forward here.

    And yes, that civil war was a brutal thing, but I think his presentation also created much opportunity for understanding and mending too. It is good to learn in less painful ways, but good too not to waste the opportunity whenever it arrives. Thanks Pamela.

I appreciate all comments.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s