How Poetry Saved My Life; A Hustler’s Memoir by Amber Dawn

Loved this review. For some of us, poetry is all we have got sometimes.

Consumed by Ink

I had no one to help me, but the T.S. Eliot helped me. So when people say that poetry is a luxury, or an option, or for the educated middle classes, or that it shouldn’t be read at school because it is irrelevant, or any of the strange stupid things that are said about poetry and its place in our lives, I suspect that the people doing the saying have had things pretty easy. A tough life needs a tough language – and that is what poetry is. That is what life offers – a language powerful enough to say how it is. It isn’t a hiding place. It is a finding place.     – Jeanette Winterson

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I had no idea what to expect when I took out How Poetry Saved My Life from the library to read it in preparation for the March non-fiction Write Reads podcast. I had…

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Passover For Dummies

An absolutely great explanation for Passover.

Glorious Results Of A Misspent Youth

The Pharaoh came from Egypt and said,
“Have you heard the news?
Holy freakin’ crap- We’re being
over run by Jews!
There’s gotta be a better way,
Something must be done!
I know what we’re gonna do!
We’ll kill their first born sons!”

I guess their plan would have worked,
But Jesus, Mary, Joseph!
A badass Jewish son was born,
His mother named him Moses.
She sent him down the river so,
That she could save his life,
Unfortunately he was found
By the Pharaoh’s wife.

I guess he looked Goyish enough,
Or no one looked too hard,
But they got tipped off when he,
Killed an Egyptian guard.
Then Moses said “Oh no, some heavy
Shit be goin’ down,
I better go and take my ass, and
Run it out of town!”

Perhaps he drank bad cactus juice,
Or his brain turned to mush,
When he saw God talk to him…

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Xmas in the Hood

I follow this South African woman’s blog and I thought I would share her description of how they celebrate Christmas in her part of the world. Enjoy.

DevynStella

There’s no christmas tree or a chimney. You won’t find grandfather frost or any snow man. There’s no going from house to house singing christmas carols or the serving of mince pies as dessert. Its very anormal (and quite disturbing for some) seeing a house with christmas lights and decorations. And just so you know in the hood, we have absolutely no use for christmas crackers and there is also not a single drop of snow just an abundance of sunshine.

You will find presents, they are just not in a stocking under some christmas tree. If you’re hoping for a delicious taste of some good fresh roast turkey, forget it. There is however a variety of tasty meaty dishes. You also have the option to have all of our most favourable salads (mashed potatoes, coleslaw and a beetroot salad) in one plate to form part of our rare ‘seven…

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The Battle of As Samawah

Today I am re-posting a fellow blogger’s post called “The Battle of As Samawah”. It is long piece based on his experiences in Iraq. Don Gomez is an Iraq war veteran and member of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. He blogs at “Carrying the Gun”. Here’s what it is like to be at the front lines in a war where there are no front lines.

Carrying the Gun

March 28, 2003. Night time. Warm air. Kuwait International Airport. The screaming roar of engines disorients as we hobble towards the anxious planes sitting in the dark. Distant city lights twinkle in the gaseous exhaust. I imagine a Kuwaiti family, somewhere out there, sitting down for dinner.

Fuck. I’m already sweating in my brand new camouflage chemical suit. It’s bulky, hot, and scratchy.

We waddle forward. I’m upset that I’m not wearing a parachute. For months, we trained to parachute into Baghdad airport commando-style in what would later become the greatest-mission-that-never-happened. Now, our commanders tell us we are going to instead simply land on some captured airfield in southern Iraq. The details are unclear. Were we going to roll out of the back of the aircraft, guns blazing? Would the enemy be there, or was the airfield secure?

I shuffle up the ramp and drop my heavy rucksack filled…

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