TCS: Inclusive, Diverse, Free – Libraries Are For Everyone

    Good Morning!

______________________________

Welcome to  The Coffee  Shop, just for you early risers
on Monday mornings. This is an Open Thread forum,
so if you have an off-topic opinion burning a hole in
your brainpan, feel free to add a comment.

______________________________

“The only thing that you absolutely have to know,
is the location of the library.” – Albert Einstein

“You want weapons? We’re in a library.
Books are the best weapon in the world.
This room’s the greatest arsenal we could have.

Arm yourself!” – Doctor Who
(Screenwriter-Producer Russell T. Davies)

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry, The Coffee Shop | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Poem by Diana Hendry on Her Birthday

October 2,1941 Diana Hendry born, UK poet, children’s author, and short story writer; won the 1991 Whitbread Award for best children’s book for Harvey Angell. Her collections of poetry for adults include Making Blue, Borderers, and Late Love: And Other Whodunnits.

To read Diana Hendry’s poem “Watching Telly With You” click:

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry, United Kingdom | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

A Poem on the Birthday of W.S. Merwin

W.S. Merwin was born in New York City on September 30, 1927; American poet; US Poet Laureate (2010); two-time Pulitzer Prize for Poetry winner, 1971 and 2009; National Book Award for Poetry 2005. He died at age 91 on March 15, 2019.

To read W.S. Merwin’s poem “The Speed of Light” click:

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Women: The Force, The Flame, and The Furore

by IRENE FOWLER, Contributor

Again, it is up to women who bear the unrelenting, diabolical, yoke of callous/inhumane misogyny to rise up and fight. Women are engaged in bare-knuckled, in-the-mud, trench warfare, against unjust and cruel calcified patriarchal systems. These seen and unseen self-sacrificial, courageous battles to put down draconian, medieval laws and mores, in order to gain basic, inalienable rights are nothing short of heroic.

The fact that women are still facing chronic oppression, despite the stupendous advances achieved in key areas of human development, is an unmitigated tragedy, and a blight on the sanctity and intrinsic value of human life.  Our quest for unconditional equality, and recognition as sentient, sovereign beings, will redound to the benefit of entire humanity – born and unborn.

Whether women are at the vanguard of bold, no-nonsense, action in the corridors of power aka lions’ dens; or laying our lives down in the streets, against brutal sexism ala Iran protests i.e swimming with sharks; or overthrowing the heavy chains of the Dobbs SCOTUS decision, which essentially subjected women to beasts of burden/chattel status; women will rise to the challenge, as per usual.

Women are in the forefront of the fight for the rule of law in the US, and by necessary implication – foundational and imperative tenets of democracy; the absence of which equals an embrace  of lawless and violent authoritarianism.

This leap backward into the dark, netherworld of strong man rule, would spell the end of global democracy. In its place, would be anarchy and the law of the jungle.

“Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’ questioning seems to have born belated fruit today when New York Attorney General Letitia James, who has been conducting a civil investigation of former President, Donald Trump’s company, announced a major lawsuit of Trump, three of his adult children and his company over widespread fraud claims, according to CNBC.” – Meryl Ann Butler – OpEd news


To read Irene’s new poem “Women: More not Less” click:

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

TCS: Acts of Rebellion and the Language of Bridges

    Good Morning!

______________________________

Welcome to The Coffee Shop, just for you early risers
on Monday mornings. This is an Open Thread forum,
so if you have an off-topic opinion burning a hole in
your brainpan, feel free to add a comment.

______________________________

“My task, which I am trying to achieve is,
by the power of the written word, to make
you hear, to make you feel– it is, before all,

to make you see.”
– Joseph Conrad

“Poetry has never been the language of barriers,
it’s always been the language of bridges.”
                  – Amanda Gorman

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry, The Coffee Shop | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A Poem by Frances Watkins Harper on Her Birthday

September 24, 1825Frances Watkins Harper was born in Baltimore, Maryland, as a free woman; African-American abolitionist, lecturer, poet, and author. She published her first book of poetry at age 20, and became the first American black woman to publish a short story, “Two Offers,” in the Anglo-African in 1859. Her novel Iola Leroy, published in 1892, was widely praised. She was part of the Underground Railroad in the 1850s, and was a public speaker for the American Anti-Slavery Society, and an advocate for woman suffrage and for prohibition. In 1894, she was a co-founder of the National Association of Colored Women, and served as its first vice president.

To read “Bury Me in a Free Land” by Frances Watkins Harper click:

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tulips: A Celebration of Beauty

by IRENE FOWLER, Contributor

“Shiny new tulip beds of different shapes and dyes,
bending beneath the invisible west-wind’s sighs.”
Thomas Moore

“Here are the tulips, budded and full-blown,
their swoops and dips, their gloss,
and poses, the satin of their darks.”
Margaret Atwood

“You believe in God, for your part, ay?
That He who makes, can make good things
from ill things, best from worst, as men plant

tulips upon dunghills when they wish them finest.”
Elizabeth Barrett Browning

To read Irene’s new poem click:

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hobbit Day

September 21, 1907 – The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien, is published.



“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.”

Continue reading

Posted in Literature | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

TCS: What You Must Hold to Your Heart

 Good Morning!

______________________________

Welcome to The Coffee Shop, just for you early risers
on Monday mornings. This is an Open Thread forum,
so if you have an off-topic opinion burning a hole in
your brainpan, feel free to add a comment.

______________________________

“Human kindness has never weakened the stamina
or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does
not have to be cruel to be tough.” 

– Franklin D. Roosevelt

Continue reading

Posted in Poetry, The Coffee Shop | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on TCS: What You Must Hold to Your Heart

These Are the Times That Try Men’s Souls

by Nona Blyth Cloud

“THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value.”

― Thomas Paine, The Crisis

Thomas Paine was born in England on February 9, 1737. Paine emigrated to the British American colonies in 1774 with the help of Benjamin Franklin, arriving just in time to help spark the American Revolution. Virtually every rebel read (or listened to a reading of) his 47-page pamphlet Common Sense, proportionally the all-time best-selling American title, which catalysed the rebellious demand for independence from Great Britain. The American Crisis was a pro-revolutionary pamphlet series of essays, later collected into a book. The first pamphlet was published in December 1776. General Washington found this first essay so inspiring, he ordered that it be read to the troops at Valley Forge.

I think that Thomas Paine should be considered the “forgotten” Founding Father. Though he never held public office, he certainly had as much influence on the American Revolution and the establishment of the new country’s system of government as most of the men who are now called our Founding Fathers.

And much of what he wrote then is still very relevant to our current American crisis.

To read more quotes from Thomas Paine click:

Continue reading

Posted in American History | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment