From Gerald’s blog. An excellent example of how bad follows ugly, and ugly follows untruth:

A poem by Fr. Daniel Berrigan, a political activist from way back, from a new collection (with a foreword by Howard Zinn, guess Chomsky was busy)

Mercifully grant peace in our days. Through your help may we be freed from present distress. Have mercy on women and children, homeless in foul weather, ranting like bees among gutted barns and stiles. Have mercy on those (like us) clinging one to another under fire. Have mercy on the dead, befouled, trodden like snow in hedges and thickets. Have mercy, dead man, whose grandiose gentle hope died on the wing, whose body stood like a tree between strike and fall, stood like a cripple on his wooden crutch. We cry: Halt! We cry: Password! Dishonored heart, remember and remind, the open sesame: from there to here, from innocence to us: Hiroshima Dresden Guernica Selma Sharpeville Coventry Dachau Vietnam Afghanistan Iraq. Into our history, pass! Seed hope. Flower peace.

Oy vey. I wonder whether he thinks that Dachau and Afghanistan belong to the same category ?

(. . .)

Be sure not to miss Berrigan’s new book, “Exodus: Let My People Go, a scripture study on the book of Exodus seen through the lens of nonviolent resistance and today’s imperial oppression.”

I wanted to be useless
As life itself; so
I told the president so
And told the pope soAnd told the police so

And one and all chorused

Like furies, like my friends


The dead told me so
The near dead; the prisoners –
All who press faces
Against a wall of glass
A grave, a womb’s thrall.
I read their lips, alas.
I told the poem. So.

Or this excerpt

The Catholic Bishops Approve
Bush’s War in Afghanistan

Lest I walk shod
In blood of Abel, crying from the earth;
‘My tantamount, my brother, my undoer’-
Lest I the Christ
And Him who shackled there
I drag through sludge
Of cowardice and dismay –
Lest I disappear, down down
The 110th escalation
Of pride,
And truncated, eyeless, soulless,
Be found
Unfit for armed might,
For rubble and America –

Here another:

When I look back I see
I’ve spent my life seeing—
under that flat stone—what?
why that star off kilter?

Turn turn, I intoned, and
out of the stone there stood
What-Not in a white garment.

Jacob’s ladder descended
(the angels holding steady)

I mounted and I
saw what

What then did you hear?
(a rabbi intoned on the way)
‘Death knell, birth cry, both
wrung from throat.’

Taste was gruesome and sweet.
First, a prison privy.

They pushed your face down
in the common woe of war,
the shit of conquering heroes.

But then in a desert place
honey from a lion’s jaw!
I tasted at long last


In no time at all
death, and you’re compounded
princeling or jackanapes
with common carrion stench.

Which isn’t the point I believe.

I carry in memory
like a bride her bridal flower
in two tremulous hands—
odor of wild roses
wet with Block Island fog.

It was touch and go all the way.
I saw along the way
blur of blood, then closer
a wounded wayfarer
hands, feet, heart’s pocket
rent savagely.
Touch! he cried, and live!
Mirror mirror—
him I saw, myself
rent. And in went.

(. . .)

Here one of the more grating Seeger songs

If I had a hammer
I’d hammer in the morning
I’d hammer in the evening
All over this land
I’d hammer out danger
I’d hammer out a warning
I’d hammer out love between my brothers and my sisters
All over this land

If I had a bell
I’d ring it in the morning
I’d ring it in the evening
All over this land
I’d ring out danger
I’d ring out a warning
I’d ring out love between my brothers and my sisters
All over this land

(. . .)

One can see that this is where much of Catholish music took its inspiration from that tortures people with taste to this day.

But not to worry. We shall overcome.

Ha, ha!

(BTW: I got the chance to go to Fr. Berrigan, S.J.’s brother’s funeral a few years back. I didn’t go because I didn’t want to risk desecrating the funeral of an ex=priest with my vitirolic hatred pouring like lava out of every pore. Looking back on it, I wish I had made it.)