During Lent we mourn what we’ve lost, but look forward to the victory ahead—the restoration of life and love. What an apt metaphor for this terrible and gruesome war.

a rhythmic drum
beats a dirge
inside my numbed brain

my soul comes out
as I wretch
from deepest gut

father bless this place again

bless the alleys
and the streets
bless the bodies strewn

bring back the hope
the love
the music

father sing to us again

bring back the soft songs
of love
and joy

bring back the great songs
of patriots
and soldiers

bring back the dance songs
of youth
and family

father bring us back to ourselves
not only Bucha
but the world

#Bucha #Ukraine #IStandWithUkraine

Image: Tumisu on Pixabay.com

Ukrainian Pierogi (Vareniki)

Original image by pasja1000 on pixabay.com

Today, I am joining in with the dVerse Poets group to write a quadrille. A quadrille is a poem with 44 words—no other requirements for form, rhyme or meter, just 44 words. Lisa at the dVerse blog provided the prompt word, “season,” which I found very inspiring.

Although the obvious direction might be to ruminate on the current, alleged season of Spring which stubbornly will not arrive here in the American midwest, I’ve decided instead to express my thoughts about a favorite comfort food, seasoned with love in a heartbreaking season of war.

I’m continuing the Ukrainian theme throughout Lent as much as possible, and I hope that this little poem will be meaningful to you during this spiritual season. (Oh! Another meaning of the prompt word.)

The Beloved Ukrainian Pierogi in the Much-Despised, God-Awful, Horrific, Heart-Wrenching Year of 2022

by Jan Brown

prayers of thanksgiving

for these russet potatoes

peel off all suffering

all death

all barbaric acts of war

and genocide

mash with cream cheese

mozzarella and butter

indulge children’s smiles

as they fill dumplings

simmer away sorrow

season with butter, bacon


and love


#Ukraine #War #Lent


The war. What is more opposite to music? The silence of ruined cities and killed people. Our children draw swooping rockets, not shooting stars. Over 400 children have been injured and 153 children died. And we’ll never see them drawing. Our parents are happy to wake up in the morning in bomb shelters. But alive. Our loved ones don’t know if we will be together again. The war doesn’t let us choose who survives and who stays in eternal silence. Our musicians wear body armor instead of tuxedos. They sing to the wounded in hospitals, even to those who can’t hear them. But the music will break through anyway. We defend our freedom to live, to love, to sound on our land. We are fighting Russia, which brings horrible silence with its bombs. The dead silence. Fill the silence with your music. Fill it today to tell our story. Tell the truth about the war on your social networks, on TV. Support us in any way you can. Any — but not silence. And then peace will come. To all our cities the war is destroying — Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Volnovakha, Mariupol and others — they are legends already. But I have a dream of them living and free. Free like you on the Grammy stage.

Ukraine President Zelenskyy, in pre-recorded video at Grammy Awards, April 3, 2022
Original image by b1-foto on Pixabay.com; poetry by Jan Brown


#Ukraine #Zelensky #Grammys

Lenten Prayers for Ukraine

The national flower of Ukraine is the tall, strong and beautiful sunflower. Did you know that sunflowers have about 1,000 seeds?

The people of Ukraine are also strong and beautiful, but they are being unfairly assaulted in the most gruesome ways.

Let us persistently advocate for Ukraine, as so many of you already do through your social media and in many other ways.

Let us persistently ask and pray for the governments, institutions and people of the world to grow their funding and support like the sunflower grows seeds.