Sunday, 30 September 2012

The G-Word OR Where Opposing Ideologies Converge

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R._N._Taber

Today’s post is repeated on both blogs. The poem last appeared on my general blog in 2008 and on my gay-interest blog in 2010; it is repeated here especially for ‘Aldo and Cleto’ who put this to me, ‘We love each other and we love God, but our families forbade our love and told us God would punish us so we had to sneak away like thieves in the night. That was ten years ago and we are very happy. What kind of God punishes love…?

Good question.

Now, I am not a religious person. Even if I were, I would deplore the divisiveness within world societies caused by this religion or that. If we believe in a God that created the world, doesn’t that include everyone?

Should we not be helping each other out as members of a common humanity rather than fighting each other both physically and/ or metaphorically speaking?

As I have before (and will again) it is high time in this 21st century that world religions got real and began encouraging people to respect each other’s differences instead of fighting over and/or trying to impose their points of view on others.

I have no problem wither with multiculturalism or immigration. I do, however, have a huge problem with people from various socio-cultural-religious backgrounds judging me for not subscribing to their points of view and making no attempt to see mine, let alone have any respect for it.

We gay people, especially, often find ourselves subtly (or less subtly) victimised by certain elements within multiculturalism. For example, I have Muslim friends but my experience of most Muslims is that they are die-hard homophobes. The same can be said of many Catholics of course and Jews and Hindus…etc. etc. etc. It must be so hard for gay men and women within these groups!

Incidentally, I received a flood of protests when I first published this poem on the blog in October 2008. Only one in four people agreed that I was making a valid point. Only recently, one person even took the trouble to write in via snail mail to complain about my including 'such a blasphemous poem' in my collection.  Suffice to say, he did not give a full address so I cannot reply. Hopefully, he is a blog reader and will see that I remain as inflexible in keeping an open mind as he appears to be inflexible with regard to keeping a closed one. Oh, well, let's hope he enjoyed the collection, may even mull over a poem or two and learn something.

This poem is a villanelle.

THE G-WORD or WHERE OPPOSING IDEOLOGIES CONVERGE

Whatever ‘God’ means to you or me,
within or without religion’s walls,
no time or space there for bigotry

Whatever it may be we call eternity,
it can but answer freedom’s calls
whatever ‘God’ means to you or me

Be sure our stand for sexual identity
find allies in any heaven’s halls;
no time or space there for bigotry

In this world, look where humanity
stumbles and falls…
whatever ‘God‘ means to you or me

It’s love lets the human spirit go free
where religion’s engine stalls;
no time or space there for bigotry

Afraid of death we should never be,
against love’s light, it but palls;
whatever ‘God’ means to you or me,
no time or space there for bigotry

[From: On The Battlefields Of Love by R. N. Taber, Assembly Books, 2010)


[Please Note: My collections are only on sale in the UK but anyone can order (signed) copies from me at a generous blogger discount. For details, contact rogertab@aol.com with ‘Blog reader’ or Poetry collection’ in the subject field.]

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