Standing Up For Peace

Day 29 — Share Your Music: 30 Days, 30 Songs

Music — it represents the sum of our lives.  Think of any aspect of human emotion or endeavour and there has probably been a song written about it.  Songs can unite or divide.  Just as there are war songs, there are also songs of protest and peace.  I prefer to call the latter, songs of kindness.   Every year I feel the love at Canberra’s National Folk Festival.  It is there that I first heard many of the songs that I have shared over the 30 days of this music challenge.  This year I had the very great privilege to attend the Festival’s Concert for Peace.  The concert was a call to action and an opportunity to honour the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (otherwise known as ICAN). Read more

Dangerous Liaisons?

Hello Groovers, I was going to start with a joke about how I’ve been hanging out in a hotbed of radicalism, but that doesn’t seem very appropriate now.  So instead, I will tell you about how lovely it was to spend last weekend at the National Folk Festival (Canberra) with many people of goodwill.  Admittedly we were a little cranky given the political times/blame games, but we took our frustrations out in peaceful and creative ways, such as through humour, verse and songs of kindness.  Here’s how it goes. Read more

We Won’t Fade Away

 

A post for the environmentally-conscious and chocolate-mad.

chocolate

Ladies and gentlemen, I’ve got Friday on my mind.  I’ve been waiting for this event all year.  For many years it has kept me going — my National Folk Festival.  It is a magnet for extremists.  I say extremists because that is the language that is now being used by some leaders to describe the environmentally and socially-conscious. In the wake of the Christchurch terrorist attack, you would think that our leaders would have learned that scare-mongering can have dire repercussions.  It legitimises the warped views of those who would seek to achieve their aims through violent action.  It is the responsibility of our leaders not to characterise peaceful, concerned citizens as extremists.  Instead, let’s have a reasoned debate on solutions given the evidence.  In other words, let’s have some evidence-based policy making without the histrionics, and then we can vote on it. Read more

I Am a Folk Festival

This is the last in my series of National Folk Festival (the Nash) posts.  The title of this post is taken from Canberra poet, Josh Inman’s poem, ‘I Am a Folk Festival‘, that I heard him perform at the Nash last weekend.  Josh said that the moment he steps through the gate he gets a shiver, a sense of freedom.  This perfectly sums up the way I feel about the Nash.  Josh said ordinary people live ordinary lives.  But the Nash is extraordinary.  It makes everything seem possible.  We can be extraordinary.  So, he would rather be a folk festival.  That really spoke to me.  I can be a folk festival too.  Is that too corny?  I guess you had to be there. Read more

Bollards Are Not a Smiling Matter, Unless…

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge  — Smile

The WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge asks us to show a smile (ours or someone else’s), or a photo which makes others smile, or both.  We can also share a photo of something that has brought a moment of joy into our lives recently, or that focuses on the outcome of that joy.  Here are some photos of festive bollards that make me smile. Read more

Sounds of Zen – A Parody

In honour of the National Folk Festival (Australia), which opens tonight (Thursday), I have written a little parody that I thought I would test out on you, dear Readers.  I have no idea whether I will be brave enough to recite it at any of the poetry workshops.  I never have before.  It depends on your feedback.   If you are really brave, you can try to sing along to the tune of the Sounds of Then, which was written and performed by Ganggajang (you’ll have to sing over the top of their words).  I won’t be singing come performance time.  I’ve provided a link to the original song below.  Aussies may find this fun, but others will probably be completely flummoxed.  Please note there is a certain amount of hyperbole used in this poem.

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