Just Because

   Posted by: VoGE   in VoGEisms

Just Because

Just because my understanding may be different
from yours, do not assume I have NO understanding.

We just come from different experiences.

Just because my vision is different from yours,
do not assume I am blind.

We just see things differently.

Just because you disagree with my words,
do not assume you are the only “good person”
in the conversation.

That is called prejudice. The mother of hatred.

– VoGE 2002

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Water Bugs into Dragonflies

   Posted by: VoGE   in Random Meanderings, Stories

I couldn’t resist sharing this wonderful story.

I hope you enjoy it too!


Living under the water in a lily pond were a colony of water bugs. They were great friends and all lived happily together but, every so often, one of them would attach itself to a lily stalk and make its way up into the sunlight, never to be seen again.

One water bug in conversation with the others said he had noticed this and had often wondered why this happened and what was on the other side of the water and more importantly , why none of the others had returned to explain. All the bugs made a promise that if they were to go up a stalk they would come back and tell what they had seen.

Well, one day, the very bug who had made the suggestion found himself stuck on a stalk. He made his way up and through the water to the surface, breaking through he found himself on a huge lily pad. Things had changed dramatically – he was now breathing air and he’d gotten wings! Suddenly he took off in a flash , soaring through the air. It was glorious!

Just then he remembered his promise, “I must go back and tell the others” he thought. So with that in mind he flew down to the water’s surface, but much to his surprise he couldn’t get through to his friends below.

After several attempts he decided to abandon that idea hoping that all his friends would know he tried to keep his promise. He flew off into the sun knowing that they would all meet again, someday, when they were dragonflies too.


Responding to a Racist Rant . . .

   Posted by: VoGE   in Random Meanderings

VoGE and Carla Thomas at the Overton Park Shell

VoGE and Carla Thomas at the Overton Park Shell

Some things you can’t ignore

I don’t usually respond to hateful words, but I found a bigoted rant in my email that was so blunt and venomous that I decided to dissect the message in order to see what made the writer tick.

I found no surprises. The ravings of the author (printed in red, below) represent typical examples of the same type of prejudice that I grew up with in the south. That’s when I decided to respond to their message point by point, if only to settle the faint ghostly echoes from a southern past hiding away in my own subconscious.

I apologize in advance if I am too long winded in my responses, but truth needs a strong foundation if it is to have any lasting impact. That said, let us begin.

The rant starts off with the statement:

Well, I am not and, most likely, neither is the author. As Americans, most “whites” are a mixture of races that have been going to bed together for over 500 years, and that’s not counting all the European hanky-panky that went on before that.

> I have been wondering about why Whites are racists,
> and no other race is.

That’s not a true statement. Racial intolerance is at the root of many of the world’s biggest problems and its standard bearers come from many cultures and races. The key is that they are all TAUGHT to hate by their elders. Cultures, like children, learn by example.

> There are African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian
> Americans, Arab Americans, etc. And then there are
> just Ameri- cans.

Actually, your parents and/or grandparents probably affiliated strongly with their country of origin, even if you don’t. They most likely lived in a part of town where others of their culture also resided, especially if they were immigrants.

The fact that you are rootless and a generation removed from any knowledge of your own traditions does not put you in a superior position. It just makes you ignorant.

Read the rest of this entry »


I Have Two Sons

   Posted by: VoGE   in Stories

My Two SonsI have two sons, both of them fine young men in their late teens. I have many reasons to be proud of them both. They are warriors at heart with strong minds, bodies, and spirits. The blood of their heritage burns brightly in them both. They have excellent minds with scholarship opportunities and grade point averages to prove it. All these things in common, yet, they could not be more different one from the other.

Both of them strong willed with a determination to prove the truth as they know it, but with vastly different ways of expressing it between them. While the younger has always considered the “sage advice” of his wise old father when life requires reflection, his older brother pretty much considers the old man’s words to be universally outdated and irrelevant to this “new world” in which we find ourselves.

Yet, despite all these variances in approach, they are both so much like me in so many ways that it amazes (and frightens) their mother on a frequent basis. I have always considered my children to be unique spirits (in the words of Kahlil Gibran, “Your children come through you, not from you.”), and I have never desired making them over in my own image.  That’s a good thing too, because these two young bucks have had their very own – very strong – personalities since their first breath! I know. I was there.

These images of their childhood come flooding in at me this dawn as I adjust to the new reality that our family has begun with a startling suddenness. Last night, about Midnight, the elder son packed a backpack and left into the night without a word…

Read the rest of this entry »


I’m back!

   Posted by: VoGE   in Random Meanderings

Hello family, friends, and neighbors…

It’s been far too long since I’ve posted here and for that, I apologize. In fairness, I have been very busy… The 1001 details I will spare you, but the good news is that some of my busy-ness involved music… and I’m sharing it with you via online videos and mp3 links!

So let the fun begin. First of all, I’ve been very busy producing videos for myself and others for the last couple of years some of which you can check out via my video production site, AnotherGulliverProduction.com. Currently the lineup includes three VoGE streaming music videos online (in stereo even!):




That should keep you busy watching for a bit. I have also posted quite a few videos on YouTube, but that’s a topic for another post… Which I will put together very shortly, I promise. Those of you who like to read ahead can go to YouTube and search for VoGE. I hope to see you there!


Welcome New Visitors

   Posted by: VoGE   in Social Sites

Memphis’ own daily newspaper, The Commercial Appeal, has always been great about supporting regional artists and now they have expanded that effort into the Internet age. The Talking Stick is one of a group of regional blogs that they are promoting on their website and publishing in the paper itself. This is a wonderful gesture on their part and I appreciate the Commercial Appeal working to be a community resource, not “just a newspaper.”

Regardless of how you found this place, please make yourself at home! In addition to my ruminations, you’ll find links to VoGE music online, and several music videos. I hope you enjoy it here and your comments are always appreciated.