artwork by Gloria Betlem
Public Poetry in a Dire Time
The world is at a great crossroads, a moment defined by growing global awareness of the huge disparities between the power, wealth and rapacity of corporations, the sway they have over government, legislators, regulators, and even - to some extent - the courts, and the plight of ordinary people, waving as in Whitman's image, like tall prairie grass over the whole Earth.
The struggle to keep our environment free of hydraulic fracturing has become, in many ways, the epitome of this crossroads, pitting grassroots rural people, aroused and radicalized because of its dangers, against the power of the world's richest corporations - the oil and gas industry….
-Dwain Wilder, Co-editor
A rapturous hymn in celebration of water… a couple facing hopeless bills and hard choices…an elegy for land rendered sterile and a defiant shout of "Keep Off!"… ground zero in the fracking wars…A lying down before bulldozers. A brave refusal to move.
Poems of anger, poems of sorrow. What can a few poor poets do against the might of Exxon® and other corporate mammoths? For what comes next, we need the angry kind. We need poets to defy their power. We need small farmers and ordinary citizens who are brave, stubborn, unshakeable and cunning. We will play David to their Goliath. We're pretty handy with slingshots.
-Bart White, Co-editor
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