The River Is Wide

Series produced by Susan J. Cook

Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
Image by: Susan Cook 
...wide river as ever... 

The River Is Wide is one listener's complement to public radio as media that has always made room for thoughtful, humane human discourse. These essays and poems are commentaries written by a political activist, psychologist and play therapist about the many provocative events in our state, country and world that remind us that the river is wide and each and everyone one of us is needed to cross it. We have much to lose- all of us- when our ideas and actions are premised on the belief that we never need any help getting across. Public radio that stirs the public conscience- free of personal influence peddling- that values thoughtful voice and speaks truth above partisan rhetoric - helps us all get across. The River Is Wide presents a series of Citizen's Guides, the occasional Congressional Guide when necessary, sonnets when no other format seems appropriate, an ode here and there In the Department of Poetic Justice, Sixty-second Moral Inquiries and brief commentaries . Public radio is a muse and PRX has become the pen and paper, yes, for many former and current letter-to-the-editor writers, including this one.

The series began rowing when a local editor refused to publish a letter criticizing a political candidate for a failure to acknowledge human rights violations by the Chinese government calling it "uncivil". Another inspiration has been the censorship of "The humble Farmer" from Maine Public Broadcasting (see The commentaries and entries in the Citizen's Guide, sonnets and odes In the Department of Poetic Justice, Sixty Second Moral Inquiries and the 'new' Two and One Half Minute Conspiracy Theory section speak to issues that stir the public conscience (and mine) and speak truth to power (everyone else's) especially surrounding freedom of speech in the media, injustice and harm.

327 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Caption: In the age of instant messages, how do we keep our vote choice our own?, Credit: Susan Cook
Party structure has always provided the legs for a candidate to stand on- supporting and staying in touch with a candidate's focus: the voters. ...

  • Added: Nov 10, 2012
  • Length: 04:34
Caption: What happens after a fish is caught teaches that fish are not so stalwart after all., Credit: Susan Cook
When people say things like the quote published in the newspaper the other day, they don't seem to realize what's at stake. So, this Citizen's Guid...

  • Added: Nov 20, 2012
  • Length: 03:12
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
In this season of gratitude, speak. Uphold civil liberties, the human rights that we have, that others will travel thousands of miles for, and when...

  • Added: Dec 08, 2012
  • Length: 03:28
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
I am a licensed psychologist. One question routinely asked is; "Do you have guns in your home?" If they say yes, I ask, "Are they in a locked cabi...

  • Added: Dec 17, 2012
  • Length: 03:35
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
Many six year olds believe that the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. The President of the NRA, is of the same mind...

  • Added: Dec 21, 2012
  • Length: 04:13
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
Spirits are invisible, never caught in the flesh, imaginary presence usually. Children think they hide under the bed, in dark places, the darkness ...

  • Added: Dec 28, 2012
  • Length: 01:48
Caption: Authorizing for the alignment took a year. Now he'd like to get the car's oil changed., Credit: Susan Cook
The last we checked on managed car , a disappointed car owner was unable to receive prior authorization from his Automobile Behavioral Health cus...

  • Added: Jan 06, 2013
  • Length: 03:38
Caption: The car would not start at all today., Credit: Susan Cook
"Whoa, the car won't start," our gentle car owner says to himself as he turns the key in the ignition only to hear a soft whimper, whimper, whimper...

  • Added: Jan 24, 2013
  • Length: 03:34
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
A solid political party structure broadens the focus of campaigns from the "me' to the "we", the electorate. Me Radio is an example of how that mig...

  • Added: Jan 26, 2013
  • Length: 01:37
Caption: Mr. Murdoch confuses reality with imagination like many babies do., Credit: Susan Cook
We now know that Rupert Murdoch and his "gang" have an ability to grasp the difference between the imaginary and the real similar to that of many ...

  • Added: Jul 09, 2011
  • Length: 02:08
Caption: The economists needed Guides to find these., Credit: Susan Cook
Long ago, a group of Economists went on retreat to fish and talk to journalists, some wearing sweatshirts that read "In Economists Are The Preserv...

  • Added: Aug 19, 2011
  • Length: 03:06
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
Acupuncture is an ancient intervention for helping raise "chi"- pronounced "GEE" in English. For those for whom acupuncture treatments have enhanc...

  • Added: Sep 30, 2011
  • Length: 02:54
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
David Brooks excels when his vast analytic abilities are brought to his fondness for Republicans. In the New York Times, he ventured into an are...

  • Added: Oct 08, 2011
  • Length: 04:53
Caption: In Donald Trump's time, Marshmellow questions have changed., Credit: Susan Cook
Delayed gratification has changed. Social science experiments often mirror cultural values and our best learners absorb them well. They do what th...

  • Added: Oct 24, 2011
  • Length: 02:57
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
We wade into emotionally shallow waters when we look at the media's recent coverage of the important consequences of the Penn State revelation tha...

  • Added: Nov 19, 2011
  • Length: 02:31
Caption: The Ven diagrams were very confusing. , Credit: Susan Cook
Freedom of Speech began long ago in a tiny town called Fragile Rock when the people finally declared "We are the overlapping section of the Ven dia...

Bought by KVMR

  • Added: Dec 09, 2011
  • Length: 03:40
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: ...wide river as ever..., Credit: Susan Cook
A new collection of observations from E.B. White, the Brooklin, Maine writer, has been culled by his granddaughter, Martha White. He was once d...

  • Added: Dec 14, 2011
  • Length: 03:12
Caption: If they chew it and it is still writhing, continuing to chew is profound., Credit: Susan Cook
As the dust settles from the Iowa Caucuses , it is time to sniff, dig and if necessary chew and swallow pettiness and small-mindedness where found....

  • Added: Jan 05, 2012
  • Length: 01:29
Caption: "Breathing" by Susan Cook
This poem to one President of the NRA has no statistics, no logic, no legal reasoning or principle. Only profound grief and sadness..

  • Added: Dec 14, 2018
  • Length: 01:09
Piece image
Eleven years after I posted the first commentary for The River is Wide series, this remains true: Speaking and seeking the truth is not cynical.

  • Added: Jan 11, 2011
  • Length: 03:04