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Trauma,
it lives in us all;
those of us who can’t
seem to “get it right,”
seeking love and then
demolishing it once
it’s found- deliberately
as if to fullfil
a prophecy.

Trauma,
it makes you blind,
triggers amnesia.
Watching her cry,
your Madonna,
unable to assist
or turn sad tears
into happy diamonds.

He’s gone,
off working or
something very important
and the strands
of sanity grow feeble.
Backs are turned,
they’re back to back.

But none will take
that step away.
And so it scars,
the invisible kind,
on the ones Madonna
sought to save.

Trauma,
it seeps from
generation to
generation,
repeating again
and again,
a cycle of pain.

Producing avoidants
and addicts
who sit and wonder why,
they can’t seem to
“get it right.”
Each generation laments
the loss, wondering
if love was meant to die?

God and his Madonna,
love higher than could
be touched or understood.
But she was left
in that story- Love
invisible. On faith
alone was child raised.
No- Saviour. To save
Madonna and us all.

But a child
born to save creator,
doesn’t make for
stable patterns. So
trauma builds and births
still more avoidants
and addicts who sentence
the other to a deeper Hell
as they try to hide
unseen scars,

looking for victims,
looking for an escape car.

Oh if Madonna never cried,
or yelled…or sought her
God somewhere far, then
we might believe that
Love could live in
faith alone.

But she did cry,
and yell and other things
so now we roam,
bearing burdens
not our own.

Seeking our prey,
too blind to heal…
Avoidant seeks Addict
and Addict falls fast
and bears another child,
…no, saviour…

Trauma reborn.

Diabeł 

They say the devil

is simply a

fallen angel,

_

crashing through the

wind as he fell

from heaven.

_

And I can’t help but notice

that we’re all little

devils sometimes,

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hurting each other

and we don’t quite

know why.

Praga

 Sierpień, 2015
Uniwersytet Warszawski, PL

An Impatient Wind

Time passes like an impatient wind,

And as it does, the memories wane.

Like the smoke of a shisha,

the scents hold strong but the vision

slowly disappears.

_

Torrential feelings, icy gusts,

cut through bone marrow and skin

leaving in its anxious haste a

hardened shell, frozen.

_

Time passes like an impatient wind,

And the figurines that used to

play in the mind’s eye so oft

trip and slip and slowly dissolve.

Features dissipate

_

like formations made in the sand,

altered by the eager gale.

Cling to images as you might

but the forms escape.

_

Time is a capricious lover,

Flirting with the innocent with

pledges to stay forever

and heady incantations of

fantasies fulfilled.

_

Then, in the dead of night or in

subtle moments in between

time slips from beneath the sheets and

wrinkled are they left.

_

Wind.

The image that was once the form

that you could just about touch

in silent moments in the dark

chases nimble time.

_

And then one day when you awake

and realize that it’s gone

you’ll spend your whole life searching for

what you can’t recall.

_

Time.

Keen to capture the scents and sounds

To trap Image in your mind

You sprint, too hasty through your life

And never beat time.

Anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, 1943 (Warszawa, Polska)

 

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Monument to the Ghetto Heroes (Pomnik Bohaterów Getta), 1948

Yesterday  was the anniversary of the start of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising of 1943 in Warsaw, Poland.

Not to be confused with the Warsaw Uprising of 1944, resulting in Hitler razing the city of Warsaw to the ground, the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising took place a year earlier in 1943 as the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto revolted against their Nazi oppressors, resulting in the burning of the Ghetto (now Old Mokotów. Stary Mokotów), leaving almost no survivors in its wake.

 

A commemoration of the event was held at the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw at Noon yesterday.

IMG_2045Everyone placed yellow daffodils on the Memorial which stands in front of the museum, in memory of Marek Edelman, a Commander of the Ghetto Uprising and one of the only survivors who went on to fight in the Warsaw Uprising, Powstanie Warszawskie, and take part in the Solidarity movement, Solidarność. His children, family and friends were also in attendance as we all walked through what used to be the Jewish Ghetto and commemorated those who were lost in this dreadful period of European History.

 

IMG_2018The commemorative walk through the Ghetto ended at Umschlagplatz, where the Jews were transported from the Ghetto to the Treblinka death camp by the Nazis.

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The commemoration was interesting to be a part of and it was even more interesting to note that the anniversary landed on the Sabbath, preventing many of the observant Jewish community from attending. Furthermore, the date falls on the day before Easter, when most of Warsaw and Poland are getting their Easter baskets blessed at church, known as Święconka.

Altogether the event was an opportunity to reflect on the turbulent history of the city of Warsaw, a city I have grown to love deeply over the years. Jewish history is perhaps one of the most controversial topics in Poland and continues to be problematic in the development of the permanent exhibition in the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw. The commemoration was an opportune moment to pause and think.

It is now time to get off of this computer and enjoy the beautiful Easter Sunday here in Warsaw.

Wszystkiego Najlepszego!

The Liberated Polyglot

What’s Your Art?: “Love…for me, it takes a great deal of work”

 

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This is Michael. We met at the yoghurt shop on my way home from work. Not sure what possessed me to go get some frozen yoghurt in 13˚F weather, but there you go.

Michael was in Poland during the ’80s at Jagiellonian University! We had a lot to talk about: the way Poland has changed so much since then, the way that history has affected him and the people he’s interacted with over the years and how there are good people all over the world…but for sure in Poland 🙂

Here is what he had to say.

Michael is a retired school counselor and he used to teach and counsel at a school just down the street from mine in East New York, Brooklyn! He spent a good half an hour giving me tips on what to do if the trains go down, if I need to walk or what busses to take if I need to leave in a hurry.  It was amazing to hear about the way the area where I teach has changed and developed over time.

Michael shared stories about his travels, his family and the things that make him happy and sad. We discussed what it means to be a teacher and how sometimes, to some people, it comes naturally.

We talked over yoghurt for about 2 hours and then I had to leave because I had to teach the next morning. But before I left, he took the time to introduce me to the Polish security guard at the Barnes & Noble next door, so I could practice my Polish anytime I pass through! haha He also gave me his business card, in case I ever wanted company when I went to Gracie’s, his favorite breakfast spot down the street that I have to try! It was brilliant.

Michael is a pretty cool guy and I am lucky to have gotten the chance to talk with him and take in some bits of wisdom from a life well lived. Talking to strangers has given me some pretty good insights…who knew?

Pooshoomshena!

(Goodbye- Assyrian)

The Liberated Polyglot

 

 

What’s Your Art?: “Love Doesn’t Exist”

Screen Shot 2014-01-23 at 8.44.42 PMIMG_0518This is John. We met at 14th Street Union Square where I disrupted his quiet lunch on the freezing park bench.

He sells antiques and is spending the day looking through old shops for items that “speak to his soul” to sell on his online store.

He has some pretty extreme things to say, so brace yourself.

We ended up debating a bit about God and whether or not love exists. I, a strong proponent of unconditional love, he, a strong advocate for love as a manmade construct for convenience and social norms. I, a spiritual being still on that journey to find God, a God I believe exists and he, an atheist.

Neither one of us is right or wrong, we just have different world views.

He explained the nature of our “throw away society,” in which nothing is meant to last and we all go looking for the next best thing before we have had the chance to enjoy what we have. Being in the antique business, a throwaway society is hard on sales, but the true people who can see the beauty he sees…those are the people he sells to.

It was a pleasant, long conversation about some interesting things.

As I spoke to this man, the following quote from one of my favorite books, The Linchpin, came to mind.

“To be naïve is to abandon your hard earned world view”

– Seth Godin

My world view has been changing at warp speed for the past year or so because of the people I have been lucky enough to meet, befriend and love. This conversation didn’t have me abandoning my world view, but it allowed me to look outside of it for a time…

Adios!

The Liberated Polyglot

In the Depths of Concrete Jungles

On a jog from my apartment in the Upper East Side, I was carried by my legs past the gym and straight to Central Park where I found myself thoroughly inspired. Past half-frozen ponds and trickling meadows, the world was unfolding and displaying its wintry beauty.
I took some photos for you that I hope you’ll enjoy. I also filmed something. I was by a stream and it was so beautiful that I sat down and just meditated quietly as it trickled along. After some time, it was so lovely, I wanted to capture it for you all.
Enjoy!

Life is what it is…

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That is all there is…

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You can run from it if you choose,

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You can fight it if you dare,

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But it will find you.

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Instead, lean into it, embrace it, flow with its force.

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And you can rest assured knowing, that nothing is sure, nothing is certain, fate is its own steward.

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But if you flow with the current of life you will find,

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that even in concrete jungles

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the beauty of nature will find you

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and bless you

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assuring you that all will be well.

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Live with love

 

Лаку Ноч

(Good Night- Serbian)

The Liberated Polyglot