I had a thought in my head when I originally wrote this haiku, and it’s usually prompted by certain things, like today (the 42nd anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.). I especially admire those who step out of line for a positive reason, those who don’t surrender to hateful messages. Rev. King endured harsh criticism not only from those who opposed his goals, but also from those who believed his methods were too meek. It takes a lot of courage to stand between the forces of two powerful extremes, resisting the gravities of both.
I find it interesting that this year the anniversary of King’s passing falls on the same day Christians celebrate Easter, the symbolic anniversary of Jesus rising from the dead. The story of Jesus could be characterized in much the same light; he was known as a rabble rouser by some, but there were others who disliked his message because the change he promised seemed too slow.
Both of them were radicals, but the best kind. They both stood up in the face of threats and spoke truth to power, even when it might have behooved them personally to relent. And they weren’t just radicals for the sake of being different. They both did it for their love of others. They resisted the sort of flailing anger one might observe in certain modern anti-government rallies (or militias), and stood up for something more.
That’s the sort of thought that went into this haiku, and thinking about that again these past few days prompted me to scribble it down for my handwritten collection.
(one might also blame Fred Clark for pushing me over the edge on this one, as he wrote a fine piece yesterday that touches on some of the same subject matter)
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