Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Poem: "A Gentle Fall of Rain"

This poem came out of the April 7, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] janetmiles. It also fills the "a gentle fall of rain" square in my 3-16-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] stardreamer.


"A Gentle Fall of Rain"


Soft words are like water,
wearing away hard stone
one drop at a time.

People see only the softness,
and do not understand the power.

The gentle art of verbal self-defense
is like aikido, all circles and spirals
of swirling words to deflect attacks.

People hear only the circumlocution,
and not the bell-song of the shield in action.

Practicing nonviolent language is like
standing outside in a gentle fall of rain,
a study of tenderness and cleansing.

People feel only the raindrops,
and not the sun lifting the sea into the sky.

But it is there, it is there, it is all there --
one word, one language, one thought,
each shaping the other into infinite complexities.

People do not need to understand these things
in order for them to work.

* * *

Notes:

The Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense by Suzette Haden Elgin is the leading resource on nonviolent communication.  See some examples online.  It's potent stuff.

Aikido is a martial art based on circles.  Like other peacemongering skills -- and like the mage in D&D -- it looks pointless at low levels and becomes freaking unstoppable  at high levels.  Also, it was officially started  by a man with superpowers. So if you want to gain superpowers and are willing to spend a few decades on that project, this is a good choice.
Tags: cyberfunded creativity, fishbowl, linguistics, poem, poetry, reading, weblit, writing
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