For the briefest of moments, every last man felt free.

Video

“Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt 

I have no idea to this day what those two Italian ladies were singing about.

Truth is, I don’t want to know. Some things are best left unsaid.

I’d like to think they were singing about something so beautiful, it can’t be expressed in words, and makes your heart ache because of it.

I tell you those voices soared higher and farther than anybody in a gray place dares to dream. It was like some beautiful bird flapped into our drab little cage and made those walls dissolve away, and for the briefest of moments, every last man in Shawshank felt free.

Go ahead, play, relax, free your mind, redeem yourself and listen to the full aria of Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro Duettino Sull’aria Le nozze di Figaro. This is a moment of grace.

 

Memorabilia: Just Listen

This is a photo of a  quote taped on a friend’s favorite spot, her desk.

We read it so many times, make up meanings and meanings change depending in our moods.  For most time we make fun out of it.

Just listen

An ant goes round and round without
rest
Like all beings in the six realms of
existence,
Born here and dying there without
release,
Now becoming a hungry ghost, then
an animal.
If you are searching for freedom from
this suffering
You must hear the sound of one hand.

These are still resonant words.
Take a break from the clamorous rat
race of modern life.

Just listen.

She was searching for freedom from suffering is the focal point of this quote.  Freedom means death.  And we both just listened for it to come.  And it did come for her and I did not hear it coming.

What is the sound of one hand clapping?  Well, it’s actually a sign for the deaf.  You raise your hand or hands and start shaking them up in the air.  This is how the deaf clap their hands. No sound.

To those who can hear me, I say, do not despair.

I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor. That’s not my business. I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone if possible; Jew, Gentile, black man, white. We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that ,,,,, “

We want to live by each other’s happiness, not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone, and the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way. Greed has poisoned men’s souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want.

Our knowledge has made us cynical; our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery, we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost. The airplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in men; cries out for universal brotherhood; for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world, millions of despairing men, women, and little children, victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people. To those who can hear me, I say, do not despair.

The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed, the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish. Soldiers! Don’t give yourselves to brutes, men who despise you, enslave you; who regiment your lives, tell you what to do, what to think and what to feel! Who drill you, diet you, treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder.

Don’t give yourselves to these unnatural men – machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines, you are not cattle, you are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts! You don’t hate! Only the unloved hate; the unloved and the unnatural. Soldiers! Don’t fight for slavery! Fight for liberty!

“In the seventeenth chapter of St. Luke, it is written that the kingdom of God is within man, not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people, have the power, the power to create machines, the power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure. Then in the name of democracy, let us use that power. Let us all unite.”

Let us fight for a new world, a decent world that will give men a chance to work, that will give youth a future and old age a security. By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfill that promise. They never will! Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people. Now let us fight to fulfill that promise. Let us fight to free the world! To do away with national barriers! To do away with greed, with hate and intolerance! Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness. Soldiers, in the name of democracy, let us all unite!” ― Charles Chaplin

Source

Listen and Tell Everyone

I am thrilled to present to you a poem written and spoken by K. A. Brace of The Mirror Obscura.  KB as I call him writes powerful poem.  He is kind enough to send me a copy of his poem even though I did not win on the guessing game.  Thank you, KB.

Click on the arrow button, LISTEN and Tell Everyone!

“Tell No One”

  I
Ever since the sun went down
I have been watching
The trees drink up all the night.
Constellations are collapsing, stars
Die of thirst without crying
As the earth is filled with darkness seeping
Through the roots of forests but cannot protest.
When the sun attempts to rise again
There will be nothing left for it to hang on.
The sky will be a ghost of dreams
Made mute and imageless by this theft.

I am unsure to wake you for fear
You will not believe what I see.

Without you only stones are witnesses
But will not speak.
They are ambivalent weights of destiny
That care only for themselves.

I am frozen where I stand
Afraid to sleep, knowing when I wake
The world will have changed again.

II
What are you willing to sacrifice
For nothing, letting sacrifice
Be enough of its own?

Are you willing to leave
All lingering doubts behind you
In a trail of sloughed off skins?
Those who follow
Will use them as parchment
To write the unknown stories
Of other lives.

Ask yourself,
What it is you really want
Beyond the atmosphere of being?

The regiments of days
Will march past the spot
You stand on now.
Unable to decide
To mark your place or leave
Nothing to be remembered by
Freezes you in indecision.
You already know what comes after
Can only come
If you give way and leave nothing.

You were nothing and will return to it.

To expect more
Is to wait in an eternity
Of unanswered questions,
You are left with
Answering yourself
With defeat.

III
What is it you fear the most?
It is the thing you love.
It is an unresolvable situation
If we try to resolve it.

Sooner or later fear
Turns into displeasure and love
To hate.

We murder the thing within us
That allows
Love to be a part of us
And all the times thereafter
We know our guilt.

It cannot be expunged,
Forgotten, or covered over.
Every thought we have becomes
One of never having had the faith
To love as we could have loved
Something outside ourselves.

The truth is
We could not find it in our heart
To love ourselves enough
To think ourselves worth loving.
That is the mark of Cain,
The shadow cast by shame.

IV
Somethings
Will never be that sweet.
Bitterness is what we seek
Even unaware as we are
Of how tempting the taste is
On the tongue, the ease
With which some words
Are palatable when said.

There is more vehemence
In the unbridled side
Of life’s ugliness.
When let loose to wander freely
In what is voiced it frees
What hides beneath the skin;
Has been waiting
To be asked
To join in and boast
Of all it has been holding back.

Love cannot wait.
It cannot hide
And so stretches itself out
Underneath every sun and star
Innocent
Of every moment it shows itself
As what it is
Until it feels unloved,
Then grows its scars
Counts them one by one every day
And calls each one by name,
The cause that made the wound.

V
I am caught in the wandering hours,
Pillars carved by a plague
Of halts with their aromas,
Sweet scents of decay, lingering
In tropes no tongue can speak of.

Fountains of drought spew sand
In all directions making a wasteland of the day,
A hollowness of a frigid night.
Neither the sun, nor the moon, nor the planets
Can move in their orbits obstructed
By dead songs of an astrology gone mad.

There is no going back. The past
Has been erased to hide itself
From what lies ahead, bitterness
And the orphaned waiting of the old.

Reluctance has become the watchword
In what wisdom still flourishes
Like an ocean tide that once receded
Refuses to wash once more to shore.

All I can do is watch
As the world shrinks beneath the weight
Of its own shadow on the sky.

If you ever pass this way when time
Has become a voice again
Remember what you have seen here
And tell no one or they will think
You have lost all sense of what is real.

But in remembering it will thrive,
Take on the true life of its own,
As though you had birthed it
With its own freedom.