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Ramblings from a Southern liberal, Boomer, single parent, grandmother, reunited birthmother, cancer survivor, pop-culture observer, retired teacher

Most dramatic lymphoma posts are from June 2002 - February 2003 archives.

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The Waking

I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I cannot go.

We think by feeling. What is there to know?
I hear my being dance from ear to ear.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Of those so close beside me, which are you?
God bless the Ground! I shall walk softly there,
And learn by going where I have to go.

Light takes the Tree, but who can tell us how?
The lowly worm climbs up a winding stair;
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Great Nature has another thing to do
To you and me; so take the lively air,
And, lovely, learn by going where to go.

This shaking keeps me steady. I should know.
What falls away is always. And is near.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I learn by going where I have to go.

--Theodore Roethke


Joy's Updates - Straight from the Horse's Mouth.
Sunday, July 13, 2008  

On Word on Words this morning, John Seigenthaler's guest was the Reverend Joseph Ingle's book Last Rights. This is the description/review on Amazon about his book:

Reverend Joseph Ingle’s moving book argues eloquently and passionately against the death penalty, serving as an enduring testament to the inmates who have touched his life. Ingle, a counselor to prisoners on Death Row since 1974, chronicles his experiences working with 12 condemned men and one condemned woman each of whom has since been executed. For more than three decades, he has spread his anti-death penalty message across the country, doggedly referring to what the state calls “execution” as “killing.” A man of simple faith, Ingle refuses to see these inmates as anything less than human beings.

With a chapter devoted to each of the inmates, Ingle memorializes them without attempting to cleanse the record of their crimes. Instead, he emphasizes the necessity of viewing them as individuals: “The public needs to see them for who they were and how their love enriched my life,” Ingle writes. “To their memories and for those who loved them, I offer their stories to the world.” The powerful original foreword by the late William Styron is now preceded by a new introduction by M*A*S*H* star, turned-death-penalty-abolitionist, Mike Farrell.
Ingle spoke about one man with an IQ of 60 who didn't understand the concept of death and couldn't understand what they were doing to him when they prepared him to be electrocuted. He asked if after the execution he could order anything he wanted for breakfast the next morning. He asked what it meant to die and was told he would be with his grandmother who had passed on. That brought a smile to his face.

There was a time I was undecided about the death penalty. Now I'm against it. Since we don't have a perfect judicial system, there is no way this needs to be done. Innocent people have been put to death and mentally retarded and emotionally disturbed people have been executed. Most are poor. Other industrialized countries have abolished it. Yet here we are lagging behind as always, the way we do with healthcare. How did we get this way? Europeans and Canadians think we are barbaric. One thing is that our administration is motivated by greed and governs through fear. W had a record number of executions by the death penalty when he was governor of Texas. Here's a chart about capital punishment by state.

Use of the death penalty around the world (as of Sep. 2007).

Blue - Abolished for all offenses (92)

Lime Green - Abolished for all offenses except under special circumstances (10)

Orange - Retains, though not used for at least 10 years (32)

Purple - Retains death penalty (64)*

*Note that, while laws vary between U.S. states, it is considered retentionist because the federal death penalty is still in active use.

2:49:00 PM

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