Letter from the Editor, April 2003
By Kara L.C. Jones

WARNING: Views expressed by our lovely Editor and her Founder husband are not necessarily shared by the contributing artists, poets, writers, and other bereaved parents who add content to this "safe haven."

Oh My Gawd! Okay, let me apologize for all the sensitive people out there who were so offended by my letter from the editor last month. Apparently my "profanity & politics" made what I was actually saying pointless. So let me re-phrase that for all the ears and eyes out there.

I am a bereaved mother whose son is dead. It is an awful life without him.

I do not wany any more of you to become bereaved and live this life I am living.

Therefore, I am against this war.

I do not want any more sons or daughters brought home DEAD! I don't want American, British, NOR Iraqi children to die. Period. I don't care what you think is right or wrong politically -- we are evolved human beings who should be able to work that stuff out with WORDS, NOT BODIES!

So, support our troops? YES, I DO!!!!! I SUPPORT BRINGING THEM HOME ALIVE!!!! I am not against the troops because of this war -- that would be like being against firemen for fire! Hello?!

You think we are winning this war? How many people have died? How many mothers, fathers, husbands, wives, and children are now dealing with a life of grief as they realize that their sons, daughters, spouses, mommies and daddies are never coming home? My protest against this war is about the people who are being killed -- ALL THE PEOPLE -- American, British, Iraqi, ANYONE!

Grief is AWFUL and I don't wish it upon my worst enemy.

So I am against this war.

Is that more feasible for those who were soooo offended last month? Look at that! I didn't use one single curse word! And I left Bush out of the argument all together.

If you need grief support, you'll find it here. If you are using poetry and writing as a way to process grief and loss -- as a way to find your way back to the world at large after loss or trauma, then you'll find support and outlet here. If you wish to provide support by adding to our content here, great! Just email us.

But if you are going to tell me that my idea of keeping ALL OUR CHILDREN ALIVE is messed up and offends you somehow, then do me a favor and don't bother writing!

Sorry, folks. I know this was a neutral, safe space for a long time. And I promise to keep it SAFE for anyone who wants to talk about the reality of grief, violence, and dead children (or the reality of using poetry and words to navigate this world). But I cannot be neutral, if in the name of politics, we are going to say it is okay to kill people. Sorry if that drives you away from our site.

With that in mind, I hope all bereaved parents, as well as left-wing-peace-loving-hippy-peacknics AND any other open-minded person of ANY political persuasion will all find something here in the name of support. AND if you happen to actually be interested in writings about peace and interested in TEACHING YOUR LIVING CHILDREN ABOUT PEACE, then check out our issue here at KotaPress and check out some of the following. (This is a list complied by various librarians around the world who are addressing concerns of teachers and parents in U.S. as they try to cope with war and peace -- this was originally posted on the AP on Yahoo news -- and I add my personal recommendation to all these titles!!):

19 Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East by Naomi Shihab Nye

Let There Be Light: Poems and Prayers for Repairing the World by Jane Breskin Zalben

If the World Were a Village: A Book About the World's People by David Smith

Courage by Bernard Webar

War & Peas by Michael Foreman

A Life Like Mine: How Children Live Around the World published by DK in association with UNICEF (This book examines life in 180 countries and includes a section on war which says, ''No child ever started a war, but children fight and die in wars every day.'' One statistic: During the 1990s, more than 2 million children died in wars.)

Peace Begins With You by Katherine Scholes

The Alphabet Tree by Leo Lionni (little creatures form themselves into words spelling out ''Peace on Earth and Goodwill Toward All Men,'' which is sent to the president)

Whoever You Are by Mem Fox

Mole Music by David McPhail

The Cello of Mr. O by Jane Cutler

Patrol: An American Soldier in Vietnam by Walter Dean Myers (geared to older children)

Faithful Elephants: A True Story of Animals, People, and War by Yukio Tsuchiya

Soldier Mom by Alice Mead (very interesting story told from the point of view of an 11-year-old girl as her single mom is called to duty to fight in the 1991 Gulf War, leaving the girl and her baby sibling with the mom's boyfriend)

The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Seuss

Miracles to you,

Kara L.C. Jones, Dakota's Mommy
Editor-In-Chief, KotaPress

This page is dedicated to Dakota
Born and died March 11, 1999


Author Biography
Kara lives on Vashon Island which is a much more awesome place than she ever imagined it would be. She is a poet, bookmaker, wife, teacher, mother to a stillborn son, facilitator, receptionist, founder, struggling p.t.barnum, turtle faithful, editor, artist, and a million other things that will prevent you from putting her in any one particular label box! Kara teaches through local art centers, artists in the schools programs, KotaPress and independently. To find out more about her, see:


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