Sunday, May 13, 2012

FW: MOTHERS' DAY: Julia Ward Howe's Proclamation, Mothers doing what?, William Butler Yeats: The Second Coming


From: Ed Pearl []
Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2012 7:31 AM
To: Ed Pearl
Subject: MOTHERS' DAY: Julia Ward Howe's Proclamation, Mothers doing what?, William Butler Yeats: The Second Coming

A Happy and Thoughtful Mothers Day to all.  I've added the Yeats poem as appropriate accompanyment to
Julia Ward Howe's Proclamtion. 
Mother's Day Proclamation
by Julia Ward Howe, 1870

Arise, then... women of this day! Arise, all women
who have hearts, whether
your baptism be that of water or of tears!

We will not have great questions decided by irrelevant
agencies. Our sons shall
not be taken from us to unlearn all that we have been
able to teach them of
charity, mercy and patience...

As men have often forsaken the plough and anvil at the
summons of war, let women
now leave all that may be left of home for a great and
earnest day of counsel.

Let them then solemnly take counsel with each other as
to the means whereby the
great human family can live in peace... to promote the
alliance of the different
nationalities, the amicable settlement of
international questions, the great and
general interests of peace.

--Julia Ward Howe, 1870 

* * *
Mothers doing what?
San Francisco Chronicle
Ruth Rosen Thursday, May 8, 2003
THIS SUNDAY IS Mother's Day. Restaurants are already booked for brunches and
dinners. The flower, candy and card industries await their annual spike in
This is soooo 20th century. The women who conceived Mother's Day would be
bewildered by our rituals. They would expect us to be marching in the
streets, not honored for our individual sacrifices.
That's because the idea of a mother's day began with women's public
activism. In 1858, Anna Reeve Jarvis, a young Appalachian homemaker,
organized Mothers' (not Mother's) Work Days in West Virginia to improve the
sanitation and decrease the deaths caused by polluted water.
In 1872, Julia Ward Howe, author of the "Battle Hymn of the Republic,"
proposed an annual Mothers' Day for Peace. Horrified by the casualties of
the American Civil and Franco-Prussian wars, Howe asked, "Why do not the
mothers of mankind interfere in these matters to prevent the waste of that
human life of which they alone bear and know the cost?"
For the next 30 years, Americans celebrated Mothers' Day for Peace on June
2. In 1907, Anna Jarvis, the daughter of the original West Virginian
organizer, launched a campaign to establish a national Mother's Day. Heavily lobbied by
the flower and card industries, Congress declared in 1914 that Mother's Day
would be celebrated on the second Sunday in May.
But the holiday did not last as a day to promote peace. The growing consumer
culture gradually redefined Mother's Day as a celebration of each woman's
private sacrifices. As the Florists' Review, a trade journal, so bluntly put
it, "This was a holiday that could be exploited."
And so it was. The embryonic advertising industry taught Americans how to
honor their mothers -- by buying flowers. Outraged by florists, who sold
each carnation for the exorbitant price of $1, Anna Jarvis tried to fight
against those who "would undermine Mother's Day with their greed."
Clearly, she failed. But growing numbers of women have been resurrecting her
mother's 19th-century vision of Mother's Day. On Sunday, in Washington and
15 other American cities, thousands of women are holding peace rallies and
parades. In Albuquerque, Boulder, Cincinnati and Los Angeles, for example,
"Mothers Acting Up" have organized events to promote peaceful solutions to
Closer to home, women in the Bay Area are sponsoring two Mother's Day peace
celebrations, both meant to entertain and engage the entire family. On
Saturday, dozens of interfaith, peace and justice organizations are
sponsoring a "Mother's Day Speak-up for Peace" event at 1 p.m. in Lindley
Meadow, in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park.
Between 1 and 3 p.m. on Sunday, at Berkeley's Martin Luther King Jr.
Memorial Park (at Martin Luther King Jr. Way and Center Street), folksinger
Betsy Rose will be joined by musicians and poets, followed by prayers and
reflections for peace.
In addition to promoting peace, some women activists are using Mother's Day
as an occasion to publicize the fact that our nation reveres the idea of
motherhood more than actual mothers.
According to Save the Children's annual index, which measures the well-
being of mothers and children, the U.S. ranks 11th among 117 other
countries. We may be a military superpower, but we resemble a developing
nation when when it comes to providing mothers with child care, job
training, health care, an adequate minimum wage and paid parental leave.
Nineteenth-century women dared to dream of a day that encourages women to
use their influence to promote peace. At the dawn of a new century, we can
best honor their vision with our own civic engagement and activism. .
For Bay Area Mother's Day information: < and
E-mail Ruth Rosen at <
* * *
From: Sharon Cotrell
The Second Coming : poem by William Butler Yeats
Hi All,

These days I often think of this poem--particularly these lines:

"The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity."

"And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?"

If I remember correctly, Yeats wrote this in the early 1930s-worried about
the growth of facism.

What is ahead of us?


The Second Coming

By William Butler Yeats

TURNING and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?


Craig Space

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