Get Creative! Original Song for 2021
Music moves, heals, and inspires us.
Enjoy this beautiful New Year’s song by a wonderfully creative group of artists.
Deborah Levine, Editor-in-Chief of the American Diversity Report, and her 15 books have been honored with the 2020 International BOOKS FOR PEACE award. The award was born from a project of a group of associations with the aim of enhancing the books (through a literary competition), featuring culture, people, sport, art, dealing with the topics of Peace in the round, not only between peoples, but of peoples: such as gender-based violence, bullying, racial and religious discrimination, social and cultural integration.
Today, in it’s 4th year, the international alliances have expanded to include:
- IODHR: International Organization for Democracy and Human Rights – Norway
- INSPAD – Institute of Peace and Development – Pakistan and European Union
- INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION – European Union
- AFRICAN NGOs DEVELOPMENT NETWORK – Africa
- GLOBAL CAMPAIGN TO END CHILD MARRIAGE
- MY BODY IS MY BODY – United Kingdom and USA
- FAAVM – Federal association for the Advancement of Visible Minorities – Canada
- IHRMWORLD – International Human Rights Movement – United Kingdom
- NHRF – NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS AND HUMAN FEDERATION – India
- FUNVIC – FUNDACAO UNIVERSIDARIA VIDA CRISTA – Brazil
- INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS ORGANIZATION
- MUNDIAL DE EDUCACION PARLIAMENT
- INTERNATIONAL CENTER FOR DIPLOMATIC STUDIES- Norway
- NAIFA MARUF FOUNDATION – Bangladesh
- SOCIETY FOR GENDER EQUALITY, EDUCATIONAL, ADVANCEMENT & STRUGGLES – Nigeria
- INTERNATIONAL ART FOR PEACE FESTIVAL – Iran
- HUMANITARIAN INITIATIVE CO. LTD – Uganda
- HOPEWORKS GHANA – Ghana
- MAHATMA GANDHI GLOBAL PEACE FOUNDATION – India
- GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY OF PEACE – USA
- PAKISTAN SAFETY COUNCIL – Pakistan
Neuro Communication with James Brown
My musical neurocommunication with Ravi Shankar ended with his deep bow. The burst of applause was startling after the stillness, as was the quick dash of movement to the bathrooms. I turned to Cousin Sam, thanked him, and started to put on my coat. Sam didn’t move, ”We should stay for the next act.” I whined at that, “I’m tired and it’s a long schlep back to campus on the bus.” “Trust me. We should stay,” he said softly, but firmly. And so, mildly kvetching (complaining in Yiddish), I was still seated when the curtain re-opened.
Neurocommunication with Ravi Shankar
My cousin Sam and I escaped our Harvard dorms and were about to experience neurocommunication as we headed out to a Ravi Shankar concert in a small neighborhood theater in Boston. I was just seventeen, you know what I mean, and it was frostbite territory standing at the bus stop in Cambridge, Mass. Freezing almost took my mind off of being homesick for my family back in New York. Overcome with loneliness, I needed an attitude adjustment and Sam insisted on some music therapy. He thought that classical sitar music from India would distract and soothe – reboot my brain. I wondered why we were the only Harvard students who ‘d come to hear this relatively unknown musician from India. But it was the sixties and Shankar hadn’t yet been labeled by The Beatles’ George Harrison as “the godfather of world music”.
Step Up Writing Skills
Climb Up the Ladder
Why bother writing when technology does much of the work for us? Templates plan for us, spell-check edits for us, and there’s enough information online to produce a ocean of plagiarized work. It’s no surprise that technical and business writing skills are becoming lost arts. Yet, successful communication with colleagues, teams, and clients relies heavily on written memos, emails, reports, proposals, and evaluations. Professional development , especially in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) should have a strong focus on technical writing skills, but rarely does.
If you want to lead in STEM…
- Write to organize your thoughts
- Write to increase your visibility
- Write to develop your credibility
- Write to establish your influence
After Corey Mesler
Last night I was a child again
in Jutland, Denmark, nineteen forty-two.
My mother’s milk surged as I suckled
and kneaded her distended breast.
A growing roar shook windowpanes,
her dripping nipple swung away.
She shuddered, looked outside and up
as dark things in a wedge crept by.
She wept and trembled, crushed
my face into her breast as engine noises dimmed.
I sucked in eerie silence, blissful, unaware
that German mothers and their children
soon would suffer, starve and die.
Author’s Comments: Corey Mesler’s poem, “Last Night I Was a Child Again in Raleigh,” was published in his book, Among the Mensans by Iris Press, 2017.
According to family legend, British bombers flew over the hospital when I was born on March 7, 1942 in Nørresundby on the north shore of Limfjorden in northern Jylland (Jutland). They would probably have been headed for the German naval bases and industry around Hamburg, Germany, where many civilians would be killed.
We were relatively safe in Denmark under German occupation.
Image credit: British fighters, bomber escorts, superimposed on Pablo Picasso’s painting, ‘Maternity’
I am the wren psalming the rising sun
I am the foam of the sea rushing the shore
I am the deer that leaps through woods,
I am the purple thistle, velvet and sting,
I am the otter romping the river,
I am the raindrop that sweetens the spring,
I am the red fox, tail brushing the field,
I am the moss that furs the bark of the oak,
I am the dolphin whistling in the waves
I am the hawthorn, berry and blossom, blush in the hedgerow,
I am the quicksilver moonbeam,
I am the center of the eye, pursuing the horizon,
I am the breath of God – stardust and song.
Editor’s note: The poem is in the style of the “Song of Amergin” (See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amergin_Gl%C3%BAingel and http://celticmythpodshow.com/Resources/Amergin.php)
Image credit: A willow wren with a wide distribution in Ireland [Photograph by marliesplatvoet (Pixabay)]
We come to the coast – broken,
bruised – we reach the edge
of our world. Waves stretch, winds
shift – freedom in the West.
Waked, we want a different,
new beginning. Instead, death clings
like barnacles on our ships.
Anchored in murky holds, this damp womb
through narrow stalls. We knot
in cages, pens – stench and sickness
dock at the harbor.
into cities, towns, we’re strangers
among strangers. Kerchiefs swapped
for aprons, brogues swallowed in shame,
even God is different here.
What do we keep, what to abandon?
Tied to our past, memory beckons.
Nightmares from the Old Country blur
into dream. Ancient enemies –
hunger, poverty – they’re here, too.
Orphans from that old world, our families
become rooted, grow in this one.
How many tides have turned since our fathers,
our mothers crossed the sea,
leaving behind an ocean of graves?
Editor’s Note: See http://www1.assumption.edu/ahc/irish/overview.html about the Irish immigration and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cholera_outbreaks_and_pandemics about the cholera outbreaks.
Image credit: Irish emigrants on shipboard in the River Mersey in Liverpool, England, about to embark for America, c. 1846 (Assumption College, ‘The E Pluribus Unum Project’.)
Who are these aliens, but if
there be, are we as much as they?
Have they been watching us?
Continue reading Rearranging the Universe – by Mike C. Bodine
Long summer evenings
The blue of the sky unmarred by a single cloud
Blooming pear trees
The second snowfall of the year, when you’d collect bowlfuls to make snow cream
Making mashed potatoes
Robin Williams and Harrison Ford movies
Captain James T. Kirk guiding the Enterprise through space
Etta James and Sam Cook
Patsy Cline’s “Crazy”
Singing Christmas carols for shut-ins
Reading Taps for Private Tussie and Watch for a Tall White Sail
Taking nature photographs
Hand-stitched quilt squares
White wedding gowns
My brother’s humor
My mother’s skin
A baby’s giggles
Walks with my dog Roxie
Sharing poems with wonderful friends
Image credit: Photography of a coneflower with a bee is by Patricia Hope.