Shame & Compassion
A Poetry Mixtape Edited by Rachel McCrum
My grandmother puts her feet in the sink
of the bathroom at Sears
to wash them in the ritual washing for prayer,
I was a kid other kids’
parents gossiped about.
They told their children
what I was: too negative.
I get it. Fair to fear...
Am I a praise poet or a blame poet?
Today I am a blame poet.
O Death, face it, existence
doesn’t like you.
You can’t sing. You can’t...
i thought it was ok - i could understand the reasons
they said there might be young children or a nervous man seeing
this small piece...
before i start i want to say you shouldn’t blame yourself
there’s no point in beating around the bush
there’s something we need to talk about
this is the most...
Nobody heard him, the dead man,
But still he lay moaning:
I was much further out than you...
Stepping off the plane in Whitehorse
the last thing I expect to feel
not quite alone
but close enough
here in this great black north....
sam says you can’t name your book good boys without a dog
but sam doesn’t know that i am the dog
i am the ultimate mutt and i am telling him this story
It was in a boardroom
that I witnessed the latest killing
A room filled with knowledgeable
trying to understand...
Before you know what kindness really is
you must lose things,
feel the future dissolve in a moment
like salt in a weakened broth.
What you held in your hand...
We are currently adding to the Mixtape playlists, so check back soon and often! Send us your recitation of one the poems in this Mixtape, and we may add it to the Playlist!
Poets & poems
There are many scholarly and poetic translations of Rumi from the original Farsi, and much debate over what constitutes a good translation. American writer Coleman Barks is well-regarded but also often seen as an ‘interpreter’ rather than translator, as he does not speak Farsi. This link gives two other alternative translations of the same poem.
On Shame and Shaming
- Brené Brown - Listening to Shame (Ted Talk, 2012)
- Monica Lewinsky – The Price of Shame (Ted Talk, 2015)
- Jon Ronson ‘So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed’ (Penguin Random House, 2016)
- The Shame of Public Shaming (The Conversation, 2016)
- Your Brain on Guilt And Shame (Brainfacts, 2019)
- Anne Helen Petersen – The Social Media Machine is in Overdrive Right Now (Buzzfeed News, 2020)
- Nathaniel Hawthorne ‘The Scarlet Letter’ (ebook online)