Sunday, July 17, 2005

Poem of the Day

I Saw the News Today by Loyal F Ramsey

On the screen the words read
A FATHER BEAT his 3 year old SON to DEATH because he THOUGHT he might be GAY.
I'm still trying to grasp these words.

Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.

The words don't parse even when I type them myself.

Father: v. tr.
  • To be the male parent.
  • To create
  • To acknowledge responsibility for.
Father: n.
  • A man who begets or raises or nurtures a child.
I cry for this child I did not father and know that it means nothing.

Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.

Beat: v. tr.
  • To strike repeatedly.
  • To subject to repeated beatings or physical abuse; batter.
  • To punish by hitting or whipping; flog.
  • To strike against repeatedly and with force; pound:.
  • To shape or break by repeated blows;
  • To make by pounding or trampling:
  • To defeat or subdue
Beat: n.
  • A stroke or blow, especially one that serves as a signal.
  • A pulsation
  • A throb.
  • The sound of the human heart
How can this be counted as human?

Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.

Son: n.
  • One's male child.
How could one so damage one's own?.

Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.

Death: n.
  • The termination of life
  • The state of being dead
  • Bloodshed
  • Murder
  • Termination
  • Extinction
  • Execution.
How could the progenitor so quickly become the executioner?

Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.

Thought: n.
  • The action of thinking
  • Cogitation
  • Consideration
  • Reasoning
  • Intention
  • Plan
Do you think this father planned to kill?

Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.

Gay: adj.
  • Showing or characterized by cheerfulness and lighthearted excitement
  • Bright or lively
Gay: n.
  • A man whose sexual orientation is to men
A man child killed for something he had not a glimmer of understanding.

Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.
And still I cry for this child, this son, this bright and lively boy that his destroyer fathered.
Father. Beat. Son. Death. Thought. Gay.
I try, but the words on the screen still do not make sense.
Father. Beat. Son. Death.
I refuse to believe that this is human behavior
Father. Son. Death.
And I remain ashamed of being a man.
Father. Death.
I ask myself again, how can the progenitor be the executioner?

Beat. Death.
Beat. Death.
Beat. Death.


Diane said...

This is powerful. I hope many peple read and/or hear it.

handdrummer said...


I performed it last night at Wordstock, our local language feastival. I found my self shouting out the words and pounding the podium in the rhythm of a human heart as I read. I was sobbing by the time I finished.

halcyon67 said...

Wow, hand, keep up the good work. People need to hear about these things in different venues. I hope your performance went well.

How horrible. That is so sad. I hope that father rots in hell.

Is homosexuality so abhorred is this country that it would lead a father to batter and murder his three year old son? I would like to know what the son did to even insinuate that he was remotely homosexual.

roger said...

here in washington state the woman who drowned and beheaded her young daughter has been declared fit to stand trial.

ae said...

beautiful, handdrummer. heartbreaking.

colleen said...

wish I could have seen you perform it.

The Viscount LaCarte said...

People need jobs. People need health care. We started a war. We are flagrantly wasting the finite blood supply of our economy, instead of conserving it and aggressively developing alternatives. We are allowing corporations to destroy the environment and exploit people all over the planet.

When it was time to elect a new president or ratify the current president, the current president (or should I say his evil "wormtongue" puppeteer)cynically ignored all of those issues as he is on the wrong side of each one, and made "gay marriage" the topic of conversation, as if that "issue" alone threatened our way of life. What permits them to do this? Ignorance that is cultivated through organized religion.

Still, the father in this story was probably psychotic, but I have to believe that this new vision of our country is divisive and breeds hatred.

liz said...


Tantrabella said...

I found this poem two years after you posted it whilst I was looking for a photo of Kim Phuc. Strange how the Internet leads us to most unexpected places. I'm amazed at the poem. Gobsmacked. I wish I could hear you read it aloud. Thank You for sharing it.