May 11, 2016

Civil rights activists

When Thunder Comes: Poems for Civil Rights Leaders
by J. Patrick Lewis

Lewis' book of poetry is best summed up in this excerpt from his introduction:

.....  When thunder comes,
The civil righteous are finished being meek.
Why Sylvia Mendez bet against long odds,
How Harvey Milk turned hatred on its head,
Why Helen Zia railed against tin gods,
How Freedom Summer's soldiers faced the dread
Are tales of thunder that I hope to tell .....

Brief biographies of each activist is appended at the end of the book. The paintings, by five different artists, add solemnity to the powerful poems.

No comments: