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DARK DAYS OF SUMMER

Of course, life goes on - there is dancing, and there are joyous occasions, and music and poetry etc - but forgive me for saying the last few days have been bleak, news-wise (leavened by the Trump buffoonery, arguably).

The racist massacre in South Carolina, especially, is horrible. And leads on to inescapable conclusions about the Catch-22 America is in, with regards to its gun laws.

In a lesser way, the doubts now hovering over our British Olympian, and all-around lovely guy, Mo Farah, are also troubling.

And, in general, wars, terrorism, murder, and cruelty rage.

And, my friend, a poet, died.

Yes, yes, we must go on - but are we reaching a tipping point of savagery?

A Wayward Pines style devolution of humanity?

Perhaps not, but news of more nuclear weapons being deployed in Russia is again a symbol of bridges breaking down.

I am not sure poetry is the solution to much or anything, except, in this small (and it may be small gestures that comfort us, now) way - craft, attention, care, creation - are a stay against incivility and chaos.  Even art that explores and displays chaos and evil and darkness, attempts to express and contain, and question - and that may be something, small but a hope.

But poets, too, need to love one another, and die.

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