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Government has a role as well in what is referred to as redistributive justice.

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God has no role on you

Everything is on move.
Nothing is constant.
All are subject to change.
Nothing is intact.
‘Cause and effect’ acts.
Matter turns energy;
Energy turns matter.
Nothing is lost;
Nothing is gained.

One is made of the other.
One comes off the other.
You and I are pebbles,
Beset by counter forces,
In the flow of unending rivers.
How we shape is not in our hand.
Who is to blame?
Who is to be rewarded?
The Almighty has no role
On the stage for the actors’ roll
The might of the situation prevails.
02.05.2001, Pmdi

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Since the Government Has Been Broken

My life,
Has never been a convenience.
It has been a strategic manuevering,
To avoid polarization.

There had been those who attempted,
To block my path with inventive obstacles.
Trying to convince my sense of self,
That my acceptance of who I am...
Was nothing more,
Than a self inflicted sham.

While others who believed I sought attention,
Did their best to ignore my intentions.
And used my skin color as some kind of bait.
To make me feel my fate,
Was in their hands to disintegrate.

Dysfunctions and my choice of interests,
Became for them a focus.
And today these criminal minded beings...
Stand on the edge of an abyss,
As if they are the choice of folks...
To brag about which destruction,
Everyone prefers the most!

My life,
Has never been a convenience.
It has been a strategic manuevering,
To avoid polarization.
Something the country we live in,
Seems not to be able to escape.
Since the government has been broken...
By self interest and debate.

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The first step is that the Cambodian government has expressed sincerity to apologize for what happened.

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And I don't think that government has a role in telling people how to live their lives. Maybe a minister does, maybe your belief in God does, maybe there's another set of moral codes, but I don't think government has a role.

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The Impact Of Poverty On Education

THE IMPACT OF POVERTY ON EDUCATION.

INTRODUCTION

There are so many different tools that have been thought relevant in people’s developmental projects both at individual and societal levels. Education is one of such practical tools. Importantly to note, there are also various meanings that denote the broad term ‘education’. In this essay, however, we are mainly interested in defining formal education since our discussion will dwell much on it. According to Nwomonoh (1998) , formal education is the process of gaining knowledge, attitudes, information and skills during the course of life especially at school.

Though education is said to be so instrumental in human development but also in the revamping of world economies, it is very unfortunate that education systems, world wide, are being held to ransom all because of poverty at both governmental and household levels. According to Thibault (2009) , poverty means the shortage of common things such as food, clothing, shelter and safe drinking water, all of which determine our quality of life. It may also include lack of access to opportunities like education and employment which aid the escape of poverty.

Problems in our society are interconnected in one way or the other, just like poverty and personal family problems affect a student’s capability to learn. Improving education entails improving the living conditions of students. Having in mind that education is basically responsible for the development of many countries including Malawi, as the back ground suggests, we cannot afford to bypass such a vital element without a mention. Considering also the fact that poverty is one of the forces that come in the way; blocking the success of education, we feel it rational to look at how the two realities, education and poverty, affect each other both positively and negatively. That is also why we are convinced that this topic is worth studying. Our awareness of this source, poverty, and its impact on education will enable us devise some proper measures of intervention with the hope of minimizing the negative impact of poverty on education. This point, in short, explains the purpose of our investigation and why we are so passionate in getting into this research. During the whole discussion we are being guided by two questions thus, ‘does poverty really affect education? And if it does, what points do we have on the positive and negative impacts of poverty on education? ’

METHODOLOGY

The study was basically qualitative in approach because of the nature of the issue that was being addressed. This was the case because the issue of how poverty affects education, both positively and negatively is particularly very difficult to predict the conclusions without penetrating into the core of the issue. For instance, one may unreasonably rush into concluding that poverty affects education negatively only and we cannot even dare to speak of poverty affecting education positively. The study was conducted in three schools namely; Mulunguzi, Masongola and Chirunga Private Secondary schools in Zomba district between 24th April and 3rd May. In this research we used both government and private funded schools to have a more balanced result on how poverty affects formal education in these different institutions. The information required for the study was collected through group interviews of form three students and individual interviews with teachers using semi-structured interview schedules. We opted to use these interviews in the first place because we felt books are more theoretical whereas a field research is practical and it involves real life experiences. Nevertheless, we still used desk research as a supplementary source of information and for clarity in some areas.

RESULTS

Positive impacts of poverty on education
To begin with, poverty encourages one to get educated and of course work hard in class. This is because the problems faced due to poverty are very serious and therefore students who are from poverty stricken families strive to end the problems and one of the best solutions is through education. That is to say, if a person, for instance, due to poverty, is taking just a meal in a day instead of three meals, and again if he/she is sometimes sleeping on an empty stomach, he/she will resort to education bearing in mind that if he/she gets educated they will secure formal employment and eventually be able to make ends meet for themselves as well as fending for their families.

Not only does poverty encourage one to get educated, but also it helped in the introduction of free primary education. In Malawi, for instance, when Bakili Muluzi became president, he introduced free primary education and he had eliminated the requirements for school uniform forthwith (Kadzamira & Rose,2001) . This had increased the access to education dramatically as those pupils who were coming from less privileged families were also given access to this free primary education. It should also be noted that the free primary education system was not only implemented to fulfill an electoral pledge but also bearing in mind that some families were not able to send their children to school due to poverty. Free primary education was there to deal with illiteracy by reducing families’ direct costs of education. Again due to the influx in the number of pupils in primary schools; there was a lack of teachers. Sonani (2002) , testifies that the Ministry of Education re-employed all retired teachers below the age of 65. This also meant that the once retired teachers got back to their source of income which helped them support their families as well as hauling the economy of the country. The implementation of free primary education system in Malawi forced the government to provide infrastructures so as to accommodate the large number of pupils in these schools. Simply put, poverty had led to the introduction of free primary education which means that more children are going to school, and again more teachers are being trained and getting employed and finally the construction of school blocks culminating into infrastructural development, all these branching from poverty.

We may also look at poverty from a positive angle bearing in mind that when a country is poor more funds and donations come into it. These funds and donations are also given to the education sector to build new infrastructures and in the maintenance of already existing ones in the sector. These privileged countries also provide learning materials to schools that are poor as a result students in these less privileged schools perform well in accordance with the amount and quality of the learning materials that they have been provided with. For instance, a United States based non governmental organization known as “Water for People” handed over 44 water toilets they built to Chimwankhunda primary school. The school toilet facilities had been vandalized 11 years ago but because of poverty the school could not renovate them (Gausi,2007) .

In addition, these funds and donations help more people to get educated. This is so because people can use funds as school fees, pocket money and buy stationery. The donations may include library books, chairs and writing materials. These can make a conducive environment for one to learn since there will be enough facilities at the school. For instance, with funding from the “United States Agency for International Development” (USAID) ,3,300 needy Malawian primary school girls are being funded. They are being provided with food, clothing, school supplies and hygienic products like soap and body lotion (Muhaliwa,2005) . Likewise,500 pupils at Katoto primary school in Mzuzu no longer sit on the floors during lessons courtesy of Southern Bottlers Limited and Lions Club of Limbe. Before these funds and donations, pupils used to sit on the floor due to scarcity of desks. These donations improved the pupils’ school attendance in such a way that pupils have started going to school regularly.

In the same line, a needy student can be given a scholarship to go further with his/her education. In this case the scholarship is given to the person just because he/she cannot manage to pay school fees on her own. This in turn benefits the needy person and the community at large. In this situation poverty has assisted in the development of education in an area by beckoning funds and donations from rich countries and organisations.

Further more; in most cases poverty facilitates one’s ambitions to attain formal education. It becomes easier for a poor child to put much of his concentration on education as compared to a rich child. This is because a poverty stricken student will have less destructive materials for entertainment. He/she will also have less or no money to indulge him/herself in activities that require spending a lot of money for instance, drinking beer. Sometimes even if the child can find money he/she can buy basic needs and not just spending it anyhow. Contrast to this a rich child may obtain things like ipods, mp3s, games for entertainment. These things in most cases destruct the concentration of students in their studies. As a result, one’s class performance is negatively affected since most of his/her time is being spent on entertainment.

Negative impacts of poverty on education

Just as a coin has got two sides, a head and a tail, poverty also, apart from having positive impacts on education, it does have negative impacts on the same. We have talked much about the positive face of poverty on education. We shall surely do ourselves injustice if we do not look at the negative part. In spite of the fact that poverty has an impact on education that is worth complimenting, we cannot afford in this discussion to overlook the point that so many students have been forced to leave the corridors of learning institutions due to the same poverty. One of the reasons that force some students leave the learning institutions prematurely is pregnancy, which in most cases, come because of poverty. It is almost common knowledge that a good number of students who come from poor families wish they could be sailing in the same boat with those who come from well to do families as far as luxurious life is concerned. The poor students constantly feel that there is something missing at the core psychologically. With this feeling in their minds, they tend to regard themselves as incomplete and not accepted socially. Consequently, they envy the rich students and squarely want to posses the things that are associated with the rich students. Very unfortunate that the poor students’ parents cannot afford to fulfill their children’s desires like what the rich parents would provide. Because the pull towards recognition is too strong for the poor students to resist, they end up in indulging themselves into prostitution in their search for money. Pity indeed that instead of recreating, as anticipated, their promiscuous behavior sees most of them getting pregnant and for some very unfortunate ones get even HIV and other STIs. From this discussion, commonsense convinces us that this school dropp out due to pregnancy is one of the negative impacts of poverty on education.

Adding more flesh to this discussion, we can also appreciate that hunger has been so instrumental in bringing down the standards of education world wide, in general, and Malawi, in particular. Frankly speaking, there are very few students if not none, who concentrate on their studies on empty stomachs. Food is one of the basic needs that every person is obliged to have if he/she is to survive. It is not surprising, therefore, to see some students performing miserably in class simply because they have not taken enough food or they have taken none altogether. The question of hunger finds its way into the education system because the government has failed to provide adequate food in most of its boarding schools. This is poverty at governmental level. There are also some students who are not boarders but still endure the hostile reality of hunger right in their homes. This is due to poverty at household level. It is sad that poverty, both at governmental and household level, has helped in engineering the deteriorating of education standards in Malawi.

Bearing in mind that it is only the eagle that can tell us the real whisper of a cloud, we visited Masongola Secondary school with the hope of getting first hand information from the students and their teachers since they are the ones who mostly benefit or get destructed by poverty. The Masongola secondary school students and their teacher, Mr. Enock Abraham, testified to us during an interview that government’s inability to provide extra food, apart from the usual beans that the institution offers, has seen many students developing ulcers. It would sound bizarre to reason that one can attend classes whilst he/she is on a hospital bed battling with ulcers. The Masongola students further testified that most poor students who have ulcers just bow down out of the race of learning because they cannot afford to buy extra food whenever the institution is serving the students beans.

This pitiful development goes beyond the boundaries of Masongola secondary school. Mulunguzi secondary school as Mr……the head teacher at the institution testifies, has not been spared from the scourge of school dropp outs simply because the school has not been able to provide extra or adequate food to students who cannot take what their friends take on health grounds. Needless to say this leaves the education standards in Malawi vacillating. It is a pity that though we have wrestled with this question of poverty a dozen times, we have not been successful in the battle. At one point in time, the government attempted to minimize the chances of school dropout in primary schools through its provision of porridge to pupils in the junior section. This attempt was in itself a good gesture but the government has failed to implement the initiative further in other schools that up to now have not benefited from the program.

It may not sound an exaggeration if we may say poverty has also forced a good number of students to give up their hopes of getting educated simply because they find it so difficult traveling to and from their respective schools. Lack of transport means, in short, has pushed them well towards the blink of despair as far as attaining formal education is concerned. This point speaks for itself how poverty can sometimes work on the education’s disadvantage.

As we go further with this discussion, we also appreciate the fact that the problem that mostly hinders a student’s success is inadequate resources that include; few teachers and learning materials. It must be highlighted that these problems are not only in developing countries but they may also find their way in reasonably developed countries like South Africa. In a developing country like Malawi, the education system encounters these problems because of the government’s failure to look into problems of infrastructure, capacity and availability of teaching and learning materials (Nkawike,2005) . The Muluzi government did a little if any; in as far as infrastructure is concerned. Lack of school blocks facilitated by a large number of pupils due to the introduction of the free primary education in 1994, forced pupils to have lessons under trees. In 2003, for example, lack of school blocks resulted in a tragedy at Nkomachi in Lilongwe when a tree fell onto an outdoor class, resulting in injury and deaths of pupils (Mvula & Chanika,2004) . This problem of learning materials continues till date, in all levels of the education system. According to Abraham (2009) , the school has always had shortage of learning blocks to an extent that the Physical Science and Biology laboratories are used as classrooms. There is also great shortage of books in all departments, and some departments like the technical department needs new equipment and current books which are very expensive. With this unfortunate situation we cannot anticipate good performance from Masongola secondary school.

In order to deal with these issues, the Muluzi government thought it wise to disregard the provision of learning materials in schools. Instead the Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE) pass mark was reduced to ensure the success of students in their examinations. Even the director of Basic Education, Nelson Kaperemera admitted that funds intended for learning materials were servicing the debts of government at the expense of improving quality education. Instead of reducing the pass mark, the government and other stake holders should strive to improve quality of education, improve teacher salaries, and provide adequate materials and train teachers properly (Malawi News,2006) .

In developing countries like Malawi, the schools are understaffed (teaching personnel) and they tend to be handling a large number of students for long hours. Furthermore, the teachers are subjected to meager salaries, which are even made late. The government does not seem to have the welfare of teachers at heart, for instance the education Manager for Phalombe, Enoch Ali says the district is facing a dire shortage of teachers, a situation that is contributing to low education standards. The teacher pupil ratio in Phalombe is 1: 120, whilst the recommended ratio is 1: 60 (The Nation,2006) . Due to low pay teachers resort to organizing part time classes, which demand an extra amount of money on top of the normal fees. These changes clearly affect those students who come from very poor families, as they do not receive adequate studies because of lack of money.
This does not only occur in secondary schools, but it also happens in universities. As the academic staff of the Universities go on strike because of the government’s reluctance to increase their salaries. One considers how this is supposed to retain staff in the University. As a result lecturers spend more time doing consultancies; instead of preparing lectures and doing University mandated research. If we are serious about fighting poverty, formal education is the hub of ideas to fight these problems by improving its standards (Kapasula,2008) .
Child labour is one of the major problems that contribute to school dropp out. The majority of child labour victims are children who are living in poverty. This is so because they lack basic needs, for this reason they are forced even against their will to do any kind of work in order to gain financial wealth. This, therefore, affects school attendance. Evidence of school dropp out due to child labour is found in central region where most children are being employed in estates. This region has high tobacco production. Since this crop demands a lot of work, children are at high demand because they do not claim high wages compared to adults. Research, therefore, showed that the percentage of children attending schools is lower compared to that of northern and southern region (Nyirongo,2004) . We have the case of two brothers aged between 12 and 15 who were forced to work at a tobacco farm at Mpherembe in Kasungu district, where they were receiving 150 kwacha a day due to poverty (Namangale,2005) . We can see that child labour has a great impact on education because through it, a lot of children are being deprived of their right to education as they spend most of their time working.

In addition to that, Chirwa (2003) found out that child labour is also taking place in people’s houses. In this case children are forced to dropp out of school either by parents or on their own, to work in neighbouring homes. Here one of the victims is a 12 year old girl Elizabeth Chalimba, who left school when she was in standard six to work as a nanny in order to support her siblings. Children from low income families are at risk because though school is their only hope for a better future, they dropp out because their parents are failing to provide them with basic needs. Apart from child labour, psychological problems due to poverty is also another cause of school dropp outs. Research shows that the impact of poverty is greater on children as opposed to adults. Firstly, the problem arises due to the environment in which these children are raised. These environments being impoverished, they are intellectually unstimulating, and lack of stimulation results in impaired intellectual development of a child. This in turn contributes to failure in class which can later on lead to school dropp out.

Another problem comes when disadvantaged children are at school, they fail to understand why they do not have the same access to materials as their well to do friends. All of a sudden they start considering themselves failures and that there is little they can do about their destiny. Furthermore, if in class their friends or sometimes teachers seem not to care much about them, they get disturbed emotionally. Unable to cope with these psychological and physiological needs, they react by withdrawing out of school to be at home where friends and parents show interest in them. In some cases children living in poverty do not complete their education because they lack inspiration and support from parents. These children receive either little or no inspiration and support as compared to those who come from middle or high income earning families. This is so because their parents did not go far with their education, and are not fully aware of the crucial role education plays in their children’s future. This also happens because their parents are often absent leaving no one at home to supervise or assist their children with school work. As a result, this often affects children’s education and decreases the probability that they could go far with their studies (Weinstein,1999) .

CONCLUSION

This discussion has addressed to a greater extent problems encountered in the education sector due to poverty. While the elucidation pays more attention to the negative impacts of poverty on education, at some points it also highlights some of the positive impacts which are greatly outweighed in our discussion. Firstly, we discussed the positive impacts on education whereby; Poverty forces one to get educated by working hard, it helped in the introduction of free primary education system (in Malawi) , developed countries give funds to poor countries and poverty gets a person away from destructive ‘social pleasures’ of the world. Afterwards, we discussed the negative impacts whereby; poverty affects a person psychologically, poor people get limited resources (food and materials) , as a result, there is an increase in dropouts and lastly the personnel in the education systems are not fully equiped by the government. These findings are very vital to secondary schools as they enable us approach the problems in those schools squarely and well prepared. After the research we also look at poverty from a perspective that would not be taken by many. Thus, after reflecting on the positive impacts of poverty on education, we tend to look at poverty as a blessing in disguise. Our awareness of whatever findings we have on the table after the investigation, will help us see where things are not well and how or what should be done to address the problems. It is only from the findings that a way for our intervention is paved to minimize the negative impact of poverty on education.

RECOMMENDANTIONS

These results can be used in Secondary schools in the following ways;
• Schools should identify those students who are needy to receive donations.
• Teachers should adjust their timetables or come up with make up classes to accommodate students who come from distance places.
• Teachers or social workers should provide psychological help to students who are affected psychologically by poverty.
Government should provide some transport means like buses and enough learning materials.
• Those who need special diet on health grounds should be given food that suits their condition.
• Schools should encourage Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) meetings to discuss the welfare of the students.

LIST OF REFERENCES

Gausi, C. (September 12,2007) US NGOs refurbishes toilets for schools. The Nation. p4.
Muhaliwa, M. (August 9,2005) CRECCOM in new girl’s education program. Daily Times. p4.
Sobo. (May 22,2006) Coca-Cola serves katoto FP school. The Nation.p12.
Namangale, f. child labor shifts to small farms (Ecam) . CFSC press review.
October 2005, p.56
Nyirongo, E.H.K. poor education is by religion. CFSC press review. January 2005, p.52
Weinstein, G.1986. The disadvantaged: challenge to education. Harper & row: London
Nwomonoh, J. (1998) Education and development in Africa. London: I.S.P. Publications.
Pp255-257
Sonani, B. (2002, Sept.21-27) .Temporary teachers’ programme collapses.Malawi News, p.3
Kadzamira, E.& Rose, P.(2001, January) .Education policy choice and policy practice in Malawi: Dilemmas and disjunctures. Institute of Development Studies working paper,124.

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The day has a role

Yesterday had been today and tomorrow.
Tomorrow would be today and yesterday.
Every day has got a role to play.
Regret not you grew into yesterday.
02.01.2010

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Finish What We Started

Lyin on our backs we stared at the stars
Tryin to count them or guess how far
I still remember the way that it felt
The night we hung our dreams out on orions belt
The moonlight danced out on the waters edge
We started a walk that hasnt ended yet
Chorus
And step by step and mile by mile
Taking each turn together
Following the signs that point to forever
And side by side
True and tenderhearted
Well finish what we started
The road we have traveled has sometimes been steep
And weve crossed troubled waters that were raging and deep
But with memories to lean on and love as our guide
Theres no path too winding, no river too wide
One foot in front of the other each day
Keeping a promise that two young lovers made
Chorus

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Government By The People For The People

government by the people for the people
for the good for the benefit of the people
this is what government is supposed to be
how many decades since any government
has lived up to this founding noble ideal

government telling people forcing people
to take consequences of fake political fall out
forcing people to swallow heinous waterboarding
torturous might is not right torture is crime cruelty
drowning under control conditions without mercy

repeatedly being proud of this in glory memoirs is sad
agony drowning once is traumatic struggle to breathe
agony drowning cells dying fighting to take a life breath
respire take in air suck in air inhale volume water expire
agony drowning traumatic struggle repeatedly resident evil

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What Do You Know About Heartache

(len chiriacka, mary welch, bob morrison,johnny macrae)
You come to me just as a friend
Cause youre looking for someones shoulder you can cry on
Well she broke your heart
Now its the end
And you say that youve got an aching heart
Like the world has never known
Chorus:
But baby what do you know about heartache
What do you know about pain
What do you know about the sleepless nights
And walking alone in the rain
What do you know about crying
What do you know about being blue
When you dont even know about the love I feel for you
You say I may not understand
How it feels to see your love in the arms of another
But you dont know the many times
That I had to hide all my tears inside
When I saw you with your lover
Repeat chorus
When you dont even know about the love that I feel for you
Repeat chorus

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Her Role

Who can deny her role?
When comes to remember divinity call
She has belly like sea belt
Her greatness is seen and always felt

No other person can be worshipped
Than her for role as mother to be remembered
Right from the childhood tills the maturity
She has the role to play like almighty

So much said in her honor
I shall dwell no more
It is feeling of gratitude
Even if we have different attitude

She shall ever remain so
Even if we may have little time to go
'Oh, mom where you are
Why are you so far?

Even old people remember
Their mom with praise and care
'She was always there for us:
With great hope and trust

Not only with human being
But with animals too it brings
A real glimpse of never missing
Love of nobody's choosing

I bow my head in recognition
With clear and sincere intuition
Tears rush in remote corner
As soon as we try to remember

She may not be among us
Yet will whole heartedly miss
What a love with lovely kisses
That has made our life with her blessings

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Check To Check

They claimed they overpaid us a debt that we must pay.
Then they turn around, and our checks they take away.
We now exceed our income like so many people do.
How do we live? What can we do?

Workers as well as retirees live from check to check
And they say it will get better yet.
About 70% of the country live this way
And people dying every day.

We have to decide between food and health
So we tighten up our belts.
You don’t take food out of your children s mouths
To feed others, although they may be sisters and brothers.
You share all that you could possibly give
If that’s all there is.

The government has to do as Joseph told
the pharaoh to do: take 1/5 of all the goods
And stockpile it up as we should.
All our monies, our grains of wheat
For later on it’ll be a treat.
And whatever we have left- then help
The other nations, or do our best.

They spend millions of dollars to find out how
A loggerhead turtle lives and survives.
Then they turn around and tell us all these lies.
It’s easy for the well to do- to talk the talk
But let’s see if they can walk OUR walk.

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What Kind Of Mother?

What kind of mother wants her child to fail so badly? What kind of mother would do more than an enemy to hurt me? Don't you know that I am your own flesh and blood? Do you even care or are you keeping your secrets under a rug? Why are you so evil and have so much resentment in your heart? Its not my fault that your life has fallen apart? What kind of mother spits horrible words upon her child? And at the same time wants recognition for that same child. Well guess what? ... I made it without you! And guess what else? ... I have no sympathy for you! And at my graduation my heart was empty because of you. And my first child won't have a real grandmother because of you! And at the start of my college life I fail off because of you. And now when people give me hugs I look at them strange.And now when people show me love I dont know how to maintain. Thanks mom, for giving me the worst up bringing ill ever see. Thanks mom, for showing me you never cared about me. Guess now you can kick your feet up and laugh at me. While I continue to be a motherless child struggling to be. What kind of mother? ..

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Natural Prerequisite

Sorry to burst your bubble.
But that sensitivity you believe you see?
Is not at all the kind of sensitivity,
Inside of me.

People are quick,
To categorize with labels.
Because I'm known to write,
A bit of poetry.
Of course that depicts me,
To have 'certain' qualities.

You know what I'm sayin'!

And in my presence,
People assume many things.
Sometimes I am made to feel,
As if I am auditioning...
For a role to play in their fantasies.

Because I enjoy the craft of acting.
Its discipline and demands,
Placed on one's attention!
That too I seek.
Or so I am told.

I am a trained vocalist as well.
If my parents sang...
And my mom taught piano.
That's all I knew.
As a child as I grew.

But getting back to 'you'.
And the love you have for passing judgement.

I don't fault you at all,
For finding me complex.
If you add to those assumptions...
Black 'and' dysfunctional!
You'd be the one...
Not me.
Who would get little rest.

I look forward to being examined.
Being mentally 'touched'...
Has been a natural prerequisite,
For what it is I do!

And you just want to sum it all up,
As sensitivity?
You're funny as hell!

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Democracy v Liberty

The fathers of democracy.
The ancient Greek philosophers
were dependent on slavery.

Which leaves me in a quandary.
How can it be democracy
to have such inequality?

I think democracy should be
a universal human right.
Though it is not quite obviously.

An ideal to aspire to.
Which one day might be possible.
The time has come now to review.

What we mean by democracy.
If everybody has their say.
It might well lead to anarchy.

When we elect a government.
The will of the majority
is what they’re meant to represent..

But it seems they rarely do.
This cannot be democracy.
the many are ruled by the few.

Who gain control quite legally
because their wealth allows them to
encouraged by our apathy.

The systems open to abuse
The people have the power to
insist on change; which we don’t use.

We vote or not just as we choose.
A facet of democracy.
I would be hesitant to lose.

It seems to me democracy
is something which we can’t achieve
and still retain our liberty.

There is no way that I can see
which will be fair to everyone.
I must admit despondently.

A partial democracy
is what we have and will retain
a curb upon our liberty.

You have no reason to complain
if you choose not to use your vote.
You have the freedom to abstain.

Sunday,16 May 2010
http: // blog.myspace.com/poeticpiers

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Metaphysical Discussion

inside the class in philosophy
the professor stans, an old jesuit, with a long white beard,
on a very silent disposition, like a buddhist monk, but in white cassock,
he sits there in front of us, puts his black book on the table,
sits like a Frenchman, and begins to open his mouth, stands
and writes on the blackboard:

WHAT IS DEATH?

that is the lesson for the day, the year was 1982, at the ateneo
de manila university, his name was Fr. O'shaugnessy, Irish, and wise,
finished his doctorate in Loyola University, and he looks at me and
asks me, 'What is death, Ric? '

and i had the answer ready from the metaphysics of Hiedegger

. The word.... has a crucial role in the work of...Hiedegger. Hiedegger defines....an individual's confrontation
with meaningless
and the discovery that the only
justification for one's demeanor
comes from within....that responsibility will
therefore be acknowledged.

that i will surely die
but between life and death
i must be responsible enough
for confront the inevitable
later
that for the meantime
i must live
and confront the demands of life....

and then my teacher
faced the wall, not listening well about
what i had been saying
on the verbosity of it all

and he wrote on the blackboard
below what is death,

what will you do if you will die today?

write an essay, he made the instruction.
i did not submit anything

and for that he gave me an 'A'.

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Frank Gardiner

Oh Frank Gardiner is caught at last and lies in Sydney jail,
For wounding Sergeant Middleton and robbing the Mudgee mail.
For plundering of the gold escort, the Carcoar mail also;
And it was for gold he made so bold, and not so long ago.

His daring deeds surprised them all throughout the Sydney land,
And on his friends he gave a call, and quickly raised a band.
And fortune always favoured him, until this time of late,
Until Ben Hall and Gilbert met with their dreadful fate.

Young Vane, he has surrendered, Ben Hall's got his death wound,
And as for Johnny Gilbert, near Binalong was found,
He was all alone and lost his horse, three troopers came in sight,
And fought the three most manfully, got slaughtered in the fight.

Farewell, adieu, to outlawed Frank, he was the poor man's friend.
The Government has secured him, the laws he did offend.
He boldly stood his trial and answered in a breath,
'And do what you will, you can but kill; I have no fear of death!'

Day after day they remanded him, escorted from the bar,
Fresh charges brought against him from neighbours near and far,
And now it is all over; the sentence they have passed,
All sought to find a verdict, and 'Guilty' 'twas at last.

When lives you take, a warning boys, a woman never trust:
She will turn round, I will be bound, Queen's evidence, the first.
He's doing two-and-thirty years; he's doomed to served the Crown,
And well may he say, he cursed the day he met with Mrs Brown.

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Thats What Love Is For

Michael omartian/mark muller/amy grant
Copyright 1991 all nations music (ascap)/moomaison (ascap)/mca music, a div. of mca, inc. (ascap)/age to age music, inc. (ascap), adm. by reunion music group, inc.
Sometimes we make it harder than it is
Well take a perfect night
And fill it up with words we dont mean
Dark sides best unseen
And we wonder why were feeling this way.
Sometimes I wonder if we really feel the same
Why we can be unkind
Questioning the strongest of hearts
Thats when we must start
Believing in the one thing that has gotten us this far.
Thats what love is for
To help us through it
Thats what love if for
Nothing else can do it.
Melt our defenses
Bring us back to our senses
Give us strength to try once more
Baby, thats what love is for.
Sometimes I see you
And you dont know I am there
And Im washed away by emotions
I hold deep down inside
Getting stronger with time
Its living through the fire
And holding on we find
Thats what love is for
To help us through it
Thats what love if for
Nothing else can do it.
Melt our defenses
Bring us back to our senses
Give us strength to try once more
Baby, thats what love is for.
Believing in the one thing
That has gotten us this far
Thats what love is for
To help us through it
Thats what love if for
Nothing else can do it.
Round off the edges
Talk us down from the ledges
Give us strength to try once more
Baby, thats what love is for
Thats what love if for.
Thats what love if for
Melt our defenses
Bring us back to our senses
Give us strength to try once more
Baby, thats what love is for.
Thats what love if for.
Thats what love if for.
Thats what love if for.

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Poet-Me

I sat me down
my Poet Me
for discipline's tight regime,
hollowing out clear intent
for syntax, line breaks and such.

Meter, Rhyme and Rhythm too
joined the group.

We discussed Constructs
and Literati.

'Now, I am in charge here' Poet said.
'everyone of you has a role.

At my pen
you'll line up
while I align your countenances.

Every poem like an orchestra,
needs a conductor,
the welder of Word and Form,
the rest of you are instruments
to play my minor chords'

'Well' said Rhythm, 'nothing fits
without me.
I am the heart-beat,
the sail upon the sea;
I am the up and down
nothing moves without me.'

'No' said Rhyme, 'I am the
music line, the melody sublime.
My efforts elicit;
guide the listener ship.
I am the note's completion.
With my friend Meter
we are the helm of this ship'

The Reader said 'No I am the ultimate.
I'm the Consumer of the Trade.
Who prevails in all of this
is only for me to say.'

'All of you are undisciplined,
are nothing, ' said Cacophony
'I'm the proof of that.'
'Where would you all be
without me? ' Emotion, said
who could barely constrain himself,
'no emotion no feeling, no poetry.
That's my motto.'

'No me, no me, ' rang out
and everyone talked all the same
Me, Poet Me and I,
had lost control
of them.

Til' at the door the familiar knock;
the owner of the house returning.
Figure quite imposing,
came in
sat down
thumping on the table.

'Everyone quiet down and listen up
here is what we are doing.'
In minutes all the quarrelsome brethren
lined up picture perfect.

Each took his place
sang his best
in the final orchestral poem.

Each time it goes this way.
I tend to forget.

Poet Me, I and all the rest
exist only in Imagination's mind
flowing.
in this the best
of all possible
poetically inspired
word, meter, rhythm and
syntax-governed
poetic worlds.

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