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Poets for Peace
an article by Linde Kanahele

"Poets for Peace" was prompted here in Hawaii by locally featured poet, Oceya, after she read an article on prominent poets and writers who gathered at a church in Vermont for "A Poetry Reading In Honor of the Right of Protest as a Patriot and Historical Tradition."

She engaged the help of The Live Poets Society in organizing an island wide tour April 13th in Kailua and ending the 23th in Punaluu, Hawaii. A core group of poets camped at various sites including, Spencer, Mahukona, Pahoa and Punaluu and were available for demonstrations that included: Poet line up, open mike, writing rings, pot luck and a graffiti banner that chronicled local expressions of each place we visited. Dinner Easter Sunday planned at Jo Mama's in Pahoa was an all day event free to the public.

"Poets for Peace" demonstrates the diversity of peace through free expression. It was an exercise of island wide tolerance to witness and support the voice of peace. We talked with and heard over 50 poets and garnered over a hundred graffiti artist's epithets that entirely covered a 30' x 8' Banner. Lea, a speaker at the Naalehu theatre event is now traveling with the Banner in NYC as part of the 30/30 conference on peace. Brian Evans of, is volunteering to help construct our new web site,, that the collected poems will be posted on.

I can assure you I was quite moved, literally a shift occurred in my being from this experience. We are planning on doing it again next year, war or no war. Peace goes on.

Finally, I would like to share with you the common thread that was repeated where ever we went. As so eloquently said by Lea, the more that personal peace can be prepared within one's own life, the more that peace will be reflected in the world. She spoke of her own terrorists that create disharmony in herself as well as others. So capturing the opportunity to encounter our own personal terrorist really is a powerful tool and something we can do something about. This attitude was very different from the general righteous flavor of advocacy when the tour began.


Question(s) related to this article:

poems for peace,

Poetry to promote a culture of peace,

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Latest reader comment:

CPNN has received the following message concerning poetry for peace.


david inkey

Dear Colleague(s),

I am writing you to solicit your help on a project of considerable importance to me and many of my friends, the United Nations Poet Laureate Project...

Background: In 2006 I embarked tentatively on the development of the position of a poet laureate in the United Nations... I wrote;  Given the enormous supranational problems of planet earth, I have determined that it is essential for the UNITED NATIONS to have a poet laureate. to alleviate stresses on both the General Assembly and the Security Council, I have usurped the title of UNITED NATIONS POET LAUREATE until such time as UN reform allocates time to create poesis.......  In 2004 I had written”

  i am the united nations poet!

   the united nations has one poet!
   i know it!  i know him…
   though many do not know it, me, him, her…
   i inquire, doesn't the un require many, more?
   i am the united nations poet!

   i believe…
   i must defer to kofi for prose and diplomatic pose…
   and, though i can scarcely dance,
   i do court un romance…
   words rhyme for me, in every clime…
   while gertrude gasps, “a rose is a rose is a rose,”
   david rasps, a poet is a poet is a poet…

   kofi and i propose,
   peace will with peace increase…
   hymns, his, hers, my puns may cause a stir…
   a pun for fun, poems of the un…

   for more than a score of years,
   in ilo, i savored labor…
   in who, i added wealth to health…
   in fao, i gave erudition to good nutrition,
   and in unesco, i even showed dedication to education,
          preferring “learning to be”…
   in unicef, with familiar planning, scheming & screaming,
   i complained, i proclaimed, i explained
          “every child a wanted child.”  

Some poets may wish to goggle my POEMS OF A PERFECT POET.
For a fantastic webpage on the UN POET LAUREATE, see.....


sincerely yours, david burleson, UNESCO adv to Unicef, ret. aka david inkey, the UN POET LAUREATE.....i will immediately relinguish my usurped title of UN POET LAUREATE, WHEN the UN officially establishes the post...

for a couple of db/UN interviews...

This report was posted on May 18, 2003.