required reading: selection from Palmer Park

22 10 2008

I was fortunate to see everything at the local theatre festival this summer, and while I enjoyed pretty much everything I saw, the production that moved me the most was Palmer Park.  More of a docu-drama than a traditional play, it did ask some different questions and by the end I found that all too familiar lump in my throat.

The following quote is from the end of the play (not to ruin it for anybody or anything) and I find it is a passage I keep returning to over and over again because of the most basic truths that it captures:

Once upon a time there was an old Iroquois chief who was very disturbed.  His grandson approached him and said, “Grampa, why are you so troubled?”  The old chief said, “Son, I have two warring bears inside of me.  One is full of love and acceptance and kindness for everything in the world.  The other is full of anger and rancor and hate.”  The little boy asked, “Grampa, do you know which bear will win the war?”  The old chief answered, “Yes, I do.  The one that I feed.”

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