This is so great! The art of illusion, imagination and "what were they thinking"!
30 August 2009
Caroline Kennedy whom he fathered after the assassination of her father President John F. Kennedy:
Close friend Vice President Joe Biden whom Ted mentored in the Senate when Biden was very young and "very green" when it came to real world politics - and suggested as Vice President for Obama:
Former Senator John Culver, D-Iowa, a best friend from college who played football with Ted, brought the house down with his recounting of a harrowing sailing experience with Ted:
Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, a close friend of Ted's for over 30 years in the Senate and the two were like oil and water, never mixing well, yet a real love fest that lasted in spite of political differences:
Senator John McCain, R-Arizona, recounts his funny and downright annoying experiences with Kennedy. He also declared just how much he loved Ted and how much he misses him already. McCain was so overcome with emotion that after his speech he abruptly left the stage with welling tears in his eyes. Truly that was a close relationship in spite of political wrangling.
Governor Deval L. Patrick, Massachusets, recalls his time with Kennedy and his impressions of him:
Senator Chris Dodd, D-Connecticut, recalls how Kennedy, who was more ill than Dodd, called Dodd to see how he was doing. That really touched Dodd's heart. They, too, were life long friends.
Joseph P. Kennedy II, talks about his favorite uncle who helped father him and his siblings after his father, Robert, was also assassinated on the presidential trail in 1968. You really have to ask yourself "What is wrong with the Republicans who are willing to kill politicians in this great country called America? Who are these people who are so willing to kill a fellow American?":
29 August 2009
Photo by Brian Snyder/Reuters
Your Eminence, Vicki, Kara, Edward, Patrick, Curran, Caroline, members of the Kennedy family, distinguished guests, and fellow citizens:
Today we say goodbye to the youngest child of Rose and Joseph Kennedy. The world will long remember their son Edward as the heir to a weighty legacy; a champion for those who had none; the soul of the Democratic Party; and the lion of the United States Senate — a man who graces nearly 1,000 laws, and who penned more than 300 laws himself.
But those of us who loved him, and ache with his passing, know Ted Kennedy by the other titles he held: Father. Brother. Husband. Grandfather. Uncle Teddy, or as he was often known to his younger nieces and nephews, "The Grand Fromage," or "The Big Cheese." I, like so many others in the city where he worked for nearly half a century, knew him as a colleague, a mentor, and above all, as a friend.
Ted Kennedy was the baby of the family who became its patriarch; the restless dreamer who became its rock. He was the sunny, joyful child who bore the brunt of his brothers' teasing, but learned quickly how to brush it off. When they tossed him off a boat because he didn't know what a jib was, six-year-old Teddy got back in and learned to sail. When a photographer asked the newly elected Bobby to step back at a press conference because he was casting a shadow on his younger brother, Teddy quipped, "It'll be the same in Washington."
That spirit of resilience and good humor would see Teddy through more pain and tragedy than most of us will ever know. He lost two siblings by the age of 16. He saw two more taken violently from a country that loved them. He said goodbye to his beloved sister, Eunice, in the final days of his life. He narrowly survived a plane crash, watched two children struggle with cancer, buried three nephews, and experienced personal failings and setbacks in the most public way possible.
It's a string of events that would have broken a lesser man. And it would have been easy for Ted to let himself become bitter and hardened; to surrender to self-pity and regret; to retreat from public life and live out his years in peaceful quiet. No one would have blamed him for that.
But that was not Ted Kennedy. As he told us, ".[I]ndividual faults and frailties are no excuse to give in — and no exemption from the common obligation to give of ourselves." Indeed, Ted was the "Happy Warrior" that the poet Wordsworth spoke of when he wrote:
As tempted more; more able to endure,
As more exposed to suffering and distress;
Thence, also, more alive to tenderness.
Through his own suffering, Ted Kennedy became more alive to the plight and the suffering of others — the sick child who could not see a doctor; the young soldier denied her rights because of what she looks like or who she loves or where she comes from. The landmark laws that he championed — the Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, immigration reform, children's health insurance, the Family and Medical Leave Act — all have a running thread. Ted Kennedy's life work was not to champion the causes of those with wealth or power or special connections. It was to give a voice to those who were not heard; to add a rung to the ladder of opportunity; to make real the dream of our founding. He was given the gift of time that his brothers were not, and he used that gift to touch as many lives and right as many wrongs as the years would allow.
We can still hear his voice bellowing through the Senate chamber, face reddened, fist pounding the podium, a veritable force of nature, in support of health care or workers' rights or civil rights. And yet, as has been noted, while his causes became deeply personal, his disagreements never did. While he was seen by his fiercest critics as a partisan lightning rod, that's not the prism through which Ted Kennedy saw the world, nor was it the prism through which his colleagues saw Ted Kennedy. He was a product of an age when the joy and nobility of politics prevented differences of party and platform and philosophy from becoming barriers to cooperation and mutual respect — a time when adversaries still saw each other as patriots.
And that's how Ted Kennedy became the greatest legislator of our time. He did it by hewing to principle, yes, but also by seeking compromise and common cause — not through deal-making and horse-trading alone, but through friendship, and kindness, and humor. There was the time he courted Orrin Hatch for support of the Children's Health Insurance Program by having his chief of staff serenade the senator with a song Orrin had written himself; the time he delivered shamrock cookies on a china plate to sweeten up a crusty Republican colleague; the famous story of how he won the support of a Texas committee chairman on an immigration bill. Teddy walked into a meeting with a plain manila envelope, and showed only the chairman that it was filled with the Texan's favorite cigars. When the negotiations were going well, he would inch the envelope closer to the chairman. When they weren't, he'd pull it back. Before long, the deal was done.
It was only a few years ago, on St. Patrick's Day, when Teddy buttonholed me on the floor of the Senate for my support of a certain piece of legislation that was coming up for vote. I gave my pledge, but I expressed skepticism that it would pass. But when the roll call was over, the bill garnered the votes that it needed, and then some. I looked at Teddy with astonishment and asked how had he done it. He just patted me on the back and said, "Luck of the Irish."
Of course, luck had little to do with Ted Kennedy's legislative success; he knew that. A few years ago, his father-in-law told him that he and Daniel Webster just might be the two greatest senators of all time. Without missing a beat, Teddy replied, "What did Webster do?"
But though it is Teddy's historic body of achievements that we will remember, it is his giving heart that we will miss. It was the friend and the colleague who was always the first to pick up the phone and say, "I'm sorry for your loss," or "I hope you feel better," or "What can I do to help?" It was the boss so adored by his staff that over 500, spanning five decades, showed up for his 75th birthday party. It was the man who sent birthday wishes and thank-you notes and even his own paintings to so many who never imagined that a U.S. senator of such stature would take the time to think about somebody like them. I have one of those paintings in my private study off the Oval Office — a Cape Cod seascape that was a gift to a freshman legislator who had just arrived in Washington and happened to admire it when Ted Kennedy welcomed him into his office. That, by the way, is my second gift from Teddy and Vicki after our dog Bo. And it seems like everyone has one of those stories — the ones that often start with "You wouldn't believe who called me today."
Ted Kennedy was the father who looked not only after his own three children, but John's and Bobby's as well. He took them camping and taught them to sail. He laughed and danced with them at birthdays and weddings; cried and mourned with them through hardship and tragedy; and passed on that same sense of service and selflessness that his parents had instilled in him. Shortly after Ted walked Caroline down the aisle and gave her away at the altar, he received a note from Jackie that read, "On you the carefree youngest brother fell a burden a hero would have begged to been spared. We are all going to make it because you were always there with your love."
Not only did the Kennedy family make it because of Ted's love — he made it because of theirs, especially because the love and the life he found in Vicki. After so much loss and so much sorrow, it could not have been easy for Ted to risk his heart again. And that he did is a testament to how deeply he loved this remarkable woman from Louisiana. And she didn't just love him back. As Ted would often acknowledge, Vicki saved him. She gave him strength and purpose; joy and friendship; and stood by him always, especially in those last, hardest days.
We cannot know for certain how long we have here. We cannot foresee the trials or misfortunes that will test us along the way. We cannot know what God's plan is for us.
What we can do is to live out our lives as best we can with purpose, and with love, and with joy. We can use each day to show those who are closest to us how much we care about them, and treat others with the kindness and respect that we wish for ourselves. We can learn from our mistakes and grow from our failures. And we can strive at all costs to make a better world, so that someday, if we are blessed with the chance to look back on our time here, we know that we spent it well; that we made a difference; that our fleeting presence had a lasting impact on the lives of others.
This is how Ted Kennedy lived. This is his legacy. He once said, as has already been mentioned, of his brother Bobby that he need not be idealized or enlarged in death because what he was in life — and I imagine he would say the same about himself. The greatest expectations were placed upon Ted Kennedy's shoulders because of who he was, but he surpassed them all because of who he became. We do not weep for him today because of the prestige attached to his name or his office. We weep because we loved this kind and tender hero who persevered through pain and tragedy — not for the sake of ambition or vanity; not for wealth or power; but only for the people and the country that he loved.
In the days after September 11th, Teddy made it a point to personally call each one of the 177 families of this state who lost a loved one in the attack. But he didn't stop there. He kept calling and checking up on them. He fought through red tape to get them assistance and grief counseling. He invited them sailing, played with their children, and would write each family a letter whenever the anniversary of that terrible day came along. To one widow, he wrote the following:
"As you know so well, the passage of time never really heals the tragic memory of such a great loss, but we carry on, because we have to, because our loved ones would want us to, and because there is still light to guide us in the world from the love they gave us."
We carry on.
Ted Kennedy has gone home now, guided by his faith and by the light of those that he has loved and lost. At last he is with them once more, leaving those of us who grieve his passing with the memories he gave, the good that he did, the dream he kept alive, and a single, enduring image — the image of a man on a boat, white mane tousled, smiling broadly as he sails into the wind, ready for whatever storms may come, carrying on toward some new and wondrous place just beyond the horizon. May God bless Ted Kennedy, and may he rest in eternal peace.
Barack Obama, Senator Ted Kennedy, eulogy, Politics, America
28 August 2009
Drink in the richness of the wonderful photos from the photographers over at flickr in creative commons. (I find them beautiful and emotionally soothing.) You are free to use their photos if you also give attribution and a link back to their flickr page.
I've been thinking about what poem to write all week, and, as usual, started on another idea which just didn't gel well or in time. That's what's good about setting deadlines for yourself as you get that rush of adrenaline going to get out the words. :) Anyway, was researching some wonderful photos and kept finding awesome trees and one thing led to another as I knew my eternal mind was tapping my everyday mind on the shoulder and saying, "Hey! What about this?"
Photos often do give me inspiration for writing as so many ideas start flowing. Take a trip on over to flickr yourself to get inspired. You can always view my 5,000+ favorites I've found while researching for articles as I keep them bookmarked "just in case."
Some of us ruggedly root ourselves mountain high to savor the views
Some of us enjoy beauty’s lingering mirrored perfection
Some of us feel forlorn in life’s landscape, until we see we are a duet
Some of us like to stand tall with a crowd, all in a perfect row
Some of us like to party with different people, the more the merrier
Some of us like to stand out in a crowd, fiercely plumped proud
Some of us see our own rippling beauty, reflected in the mirrors of others
Some of us rush to greet the exploding morning at first blush
Some of us sway and bend with life’s swirling storms yet remain
Some of us rush zig zagging through life and still look wildly beautiful
Some of us safely hold dear a child’s swing and his playful heart
Some of us are strong, sheltering lightly in the shadows
Some of us rise up from the water and tenaciously breathe through our knees*
Some of us suffer, enduring kindly a bit of indignity from time to time
Some of us absorb the strongest truth, filtering softly inner light
Some of us like to stroll unknown passageways and secret gardens
Some of us play hard to get, secretly happy to see company coming
Some of us like to wear jewelry, all decked out at least once a year
And some of us
just by looking up – lost in thought for hours.
Copyright 20 August 2009
All Rights Reserved
* Copyright is for the text of the poem only, copyright for the photos belong to the photographers.
Have a great weekend, everyone! Thanks for visiting!
*Cyprus trees have what are called "knees" - those bumps you see sticking out of the water near the roots which are underwater in the swamps. These knees are how the cyprus tree breathes the air!
Mountain Mist treeline photo by Lida Rose @ flickr
Rugged lone tree high on a mountain photo By Chris Gin @ flickr
Cherry blossomed tree reflecting photo By rachel_thecat @ flickr
Cherry trees blanketed by snow photo By lrargerich @ flickr
Cherry blossomed trees all in a row photo By VJ flicks @ flickr
Bluebells partying in a stand of trees photo By left-hand @ flickr
Red tree photo By code poet @ flickr
Trees reflected in the river photo by Denis Collette @ flickr
Sunrise in Corfu, Greece photo by Katarina 2353 @ flickr
Bent tree Bonsai Moon photo by h.koppdelaney @ flickr
Rolling hills and tree photo by Katarina 2353 @ flickr
Trees give support to the child’s swing photo by lepiaf.geo @ flickr
Sheltering tree photo in the shadows by Zest-pk @ flickr
Cypress tree at sunrise in the water photo by Bill Swindamon @ flickr
Suffer a bit of indignity tree photo by Scarleth White @ flickr
Filtering Illuminating light tree photo by *clairity* @ flickr
Strolling with the trees photo by Bjǿrn Giesenbauer @ flickr
Tree of Peace photo by h.koppdelaney @ flickr
Christmas tree photo by laffty4k @ flickr
Redwood trees in California photo by aigeanta @ flickr
Strong tree’s canopy photo By -= Bruce Berrien =- @ flickr
Black and white tree canopy photo by anonymous
27 August 2009
From Denny: Did you know that Ted Kennedy passed over 300 bills during his tenure in the Senate? He also co-authored another 550!
“Ted Kennedy changed the circumstances of tens of millions of Americans,” VP Biden.
How did he affect our lives today? How does that translate into your everyday life that this generation may take for granted was always there?
Here are just a few examples that make life easier for so many to live well:
Wheelchair ramps: wheelchair access in public places; those are thanks to Ted Kennedy.
Minimum wage: you earn more thanks to Kennedy
Children’s Health Insurance: he went to bat for the most vulnerable members of our society – children
Kennedy was the driving force behind COBRA - for people in need of health insurance when just fired from a job.
He developed personal relationships with people like a 6 year old child suffering from diabetes who could have benefited from stem cell research. He didn’t just use her in front of the cameras for politics. She first wrote him a letter asking for his help on pushing for stem cell research; he read that letter on the Senate floor. For years he privately corresponded with Lauren Stanford, thanking her for her help and encouraging her in her fight with juvenile diabetes. The public never knew about that.
Christi Coombs, September 11th widow: Kennedy wrote her every year on the anniversary of her husband’s death. She recognized he truly did know what loss she was feeling as he had experienced so much loss in his life. The public never knew about that either.
Ted Kennedy at the Democratic Convention in 2008 - Photo (Mike Segar / Reuters)
Senator Kennedy, kicks off the Democratic Party's national convention Aug. 25, 2008, his was a performance that galvanized the audience, producing a roaring frenzy. The crowd cheered, then wiped away tears for several minutes, then cheered again. They knew Ted was thhe last living Kennedy brother.
He smiled and declared loudly, "My fellow Americans, it is so wonderful to be here." He was alluding to news reports hinting his doctors were hesitant to allow him to travel to the Denver convention.
The Senator continued, "Nothing, nothing is going to keep me away from this special gathering tonight. I have come here tonight to stand with you, to change America, to restore its future, to rise to our best ideals and to elect Barack Obama President of the United States."
Take a look at his long list of accomplishments that affect our lives to the postive!
The Civil Rights Act of 1964
The Voting Rights Act of 1965
The Americans with Disabilities Act
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
The Family and Medical Leave Act
The Fair Housing Act
No Child Left Behind Act
AMBER Alert Notification Systems Funding
The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act
The Meals on Wheels Act (elderly)
The Economic Opportunity Act
The Occupational Health and Safety Act
The National Community Health Center Program
The Elementary and Secondary Education Act
The Bilingual Education Act
The Older American Community Service Employment Act
The Low Income Heating Energy Assistance Program
Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Nutrition Program
Title IX of the Education Amendments (female athletes)
Individuals with Disabilities Education
Civil Rights Commission Act Amendments
Civil Rights for Institutionalized Persons Act
Comprehensive Crime Control Act
1985 Anti-Apartheid Act
Employment Opportunities for Disabled Americans Act
The Handicapped Children’s Protection Act
The Fair Housing Act Amendments
The National Military Child Care Act
The 1980 Refuge Act
The Job Training Partnership Act
The Civil Rights Act of 1991
Summer Jobs for Youth Program
The Mammography Quality Standards Act
The National and Community Service Trust Act (created AmeriCorps)
The School-to-Work Opportunities Act
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program
Children’s Health Insurance Program
Work Incentives Improvement Act
The Minority Health and Disparities Research and Education Act
2002 Bioterrorism Preparedness Act
The Pediatric Graduate Medical Education Act
Enhanced Border Security and Visa Reform Act
The Project Bioshield Act
The Family Opportunity Act
The Ryan White Care Act (for AIDS patients)
The Higher Education Opportunity Act
The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act
In honor of Ted Kennedy, President Obama signed a $5.7 billion national service bill April 21, 2009.
The bipartisan Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act strives to open up new service opportunities for millions of Americans, tripling the size of the AmeriCorps service program over the next eight years.
"I'm asking you to stand up and play your part," said the president. Kennedy championed the legislation with Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah. Photo (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
Senator "Ted" Kennedy changed history in America. He fought against racism and sexism. He championed the poor for equal opportunities for jobs, homes and being able to go to college.
Too many middle class Republican families who foolishly denounce Ted Kennedy do so without full knowledge of how he has benefited their lives. They have been the direct beneficiaries of his humanity.
Among many fights for the middle class, it was Ted Kennedy who fought hard to provide college grant money to middle income families, not just the poor. This generation owes a lot of their successful lifestyle to his endeavors to make America a better country and a better society. Let not his humanity fall on deaf ears to the next generation...
Barack Obama, Senator Ted Kennedy, Democrats, diabetes, Politics, September 11th, America
26 August 2009
From Denny: This funny photo showed up on Digg yesterday so I'm passing it forward for the rest of the world to enjoy! This is truly the art of hiding well. Look closely...
Quote: "This demonstrates the value of not being seen." - British comedian John Cleese
odd photos, funny photos, Digg, animals, pets, humor, dogs, monkeys
19 August 2009
Just Some Poetry.
by akeejaho @ HubPages
From Denny: I found this as a wonderful poem expressing a husband's love for his wife. The husband suffers from bipolar depression so he deeply understands how profoundly his wife's love affects him positively and appreciates her. (What every woman wants to hear!)
As a writing exercise this is a delightful take on how to write love poetry from a completely different angle without the usual greeting card mushiness.
Here's the comment I left for the author: "I'm always up for an unconventional take on love poetry and this little gem of a poem takes the prize. Awesome how you contrast inner and outer light, talking on two levels simultaneously, delivered with utter directness and simplicity, well done!"
Photo by AmahRa58 @ flickr
husband and wife, inner light, Light, love poetry, men and women, relationshiops, romance and love, Society and Culture, writing exercise
14 August 2009
Louisiana Summer Sigh: "Writing exercise in the form of a “simile smile” and an original poem about us and summer changing into the next season of life."
By Denny Lyon @ HubPages
From Denny: Just wrote this as my summer poem. Awesome photos from my flickr friends to illustrate it, take a look!
Photo by Pink Sherbet Photography @ flickr
13 August 2009
12 August 2009
11 August 2009
Do you take palm trees in your coffee? Or just cream?, originally uploaded by billaday.
From the photographer:
I met my friend Brent for breakfast. He's partly to thank for this shot--he went to go get more coffee (or to the bathroom), and I was staring at my coffee. The reflection caught my eye. Thanks Brent, for your active "coffee drinking".
This is an awesome coffee shot, my favorite!
The last and sixth in the series of awesome coffee photos! Thanks for visiting!
08 August 2009
from the photographer:
Our old doberman gave hugs, she was a real sweety-pup. This pic was taken around '93 when she was eight or nine years old. She lived to be seventeen.
Uploaded by greeblie on 23 Nov 04, 7.35PM CDT.
from the photographer:
free ur mind .. free ur soul .. free ur self ..
with a big hug =)
this is may's T-SHIRT =P
my friend ;)
Uploaded by Norah Fahad Al-Marzoki on 14 Oct 08, 7.35AM CDT.
a hug is all what we need
no rules, no limitations, no boundaries it's like an art
© All Rights Reserved by ajpscs
Sometimes, a hug is all what we need.
Free hugs is a real life controversial story of Juan Mann, A man whos sole mission was to reach out and hug a stranger to brighten up their lives.
In this age of social disconnectivity and lack of human contact, the effects of the Free Hugs campaign became phenomenal.
As this symbol of human hope spread accross the city, police and officials ordered the Free Hugs campaign BANNED. What we then witness is the true spirit of humanity come together in what can only be described as awe inspiring.
In the Spirit of the free hugs campaign, PASS THIS TO A FRIEND and HUG A STRANGER! After all, If you can reach just one person
My hugs to all of my Flickr friends and to YOU!
Uploaded by ajpscs on 10 Jan 09, 9.07AM CDT.
06 August 2009
Photo by BodogGirl @ flickr
Josh was helping Sally, a blonde, clean out the trunk of her car. Inside, he noticed a bag labeled "Emergency Repair Kit". Looking at it a little closer, he noticed a stick of dynamite inside.
Thinking that was a bit strange, he asked Sally what it was for.
She said, "It's part of my emergency repair kit."
Josh said, "I can see that, but why?"
Sally replied, "In case I have a flat and need to blow up one of my tires."
05 August 2009
abuse, Kids and Teens, Society and Culture, Religion and Spirituality, Making a Difference, NBC
04 August 2009
"Famous Sounding Words Make Your Head Feel Light." - Spoon
Photo by Dustin Diaz @ flickr - to look at his other flash work just click on his name to go to his flickr page
03 August 2009
Image by US Army Korea - IMCOM via FlickrFrom Denny: In my ongoing effort to keep from cluttering up The Social Poets, after all, this is my third post today over there... here's a link over at Dennys Global Politics blog to what Hillary is doing that is quite popular now globally! It is so refreshing to have people in government who are actually serious about carrying out government in a way to connect with the people they serve...
Video: Hillary Clinton's Cutting Edge Digital Diplomacy, go here.
Thanks for visiting! Just got back from my out of town sales calls today and am back at the keyboard posting... :) Happy Monday!
02 August 2009
Free Shiny Happy Birthday Girl Smiling Creative Commons, originally uploaded by Pink Sherbet Photography.
nothing like dressing for the occasion! :)