Thirty Years On, And…

  PoemforPeaceVol2BerniceVincentpainting

Thirty years since the Montreal Massacre, and we still desperately need action on Violence Against Women.  

What can we do? I believe art can inspire us to action.  And so this poem, for the 14 and for all those missing and murdered girls and women:

The Invocation

Come say hello, women. While the veils are still
thin, we welcome your presence, no longer missed
but present, with all the disappeared you stand for.

As if you were in the prime of life now. As if
your daughters bloomed full-grown around you.
As if your mothers were crying delighted tears.

And if you were here to see what has changed
and what has not, would you hide your eyes in
shame for what has been done, what has not?

Come into the light and tell us how you are. As
if you have life beyond what we recall or remember
before this dark December claims its own again.'82 Museum Blue shot Red

Poem for Peace in Many Voices (book and CD) was published by Pendas Productions. The cover detail is from beloved London artist Bernice Vincent’s mural of the murdered women. The blue and red painting is by my father, London painter Jim Kemp.

To counteract the silence that all too often surrounds violence, I’ve coined the neologism Siolence. See https://pennkemp.wordpress.com/2015/11/25/stop-the-siolence/?fbclid=IwAR231-tU_mp9S8GoVlIAMx13PoUKPZXa6JGOoAAJ_82bFl0cwk5sr8z-Mo8.

Meanwhile, ongoing: this collaboration for the namaz collective, mujer arte de oaxaca.
Anne Anglin and I are so happy to participate in this project! Art as Activism!  Anne writes about this “patch work blanket being assembled by a group of women in Mexico. Their aim is to sew this blanket comprised of large squares designed by women from anywhere in the world and to take it to Trump’s wall and throw it over the wall to their Sisters on the other side. These sisters will carry it off to places that will exhibit it.”

Light plant Anne A 2019Patchwork: Healing Blanket/La Manta de Curación Group.
Anne Anglin, art. My poem, from “In Light”.

Blessings,

Penn

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