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Blasting Through Pages of News:
Poetry by Tim King Salem-News.com
What Side of the Mailbox Do I Work Tonight?
It isn't a privilege to spend a lifetime revealing tragedy, or is it?
Salem-News.com photo by Tim King
(SALEM) - The day in the life of a seven day a week electronic journalist is an ever-repetitive act to witness. The news each day may be brand new but the motions we go through to publish that news seldom change.
I wanted to blast out this thought about how it feels sometimes to be confronted with pages of email and to try to decide, where to begin, the latest, or the oldest?
Blasting Through Pages of News: Poem by Tim King
What Side of the Mailbox Do I Work Tonight?
It's a colossal amount of information
Filling the mailbox of this online news station
Pages and pages, unopened, in bold
Always so many important stories to be told
A few hours of sleep are there for the taking
But news piles up; sometimes its breaking
Contacts expect the information to be relayed
Sleep is important, but news can't be delayed
One more innocent child, slaughtered in Gaza
Another white van abduction in Sri Lanka
These stories make us want to scream out
Yet deadlines are missed if our resort is to shout
Now confronted with the current situation
More email than a big market TV station
The amount of material so often astounding
Hours away it is always compounding
Five hours off means five pages of electronic mail
Where to begin; 'Rwanda Strife', or 'Killer Gets Bail'?
The sad truth is that news can quickly go stale
When we fall short of our mark, each time, we fail
Time to dig in, preparing new pages
Articles about torture, people living in cages
20 browser tabs open: poverty, politics, human activism
War crimes, Genocide: tragic staples of our electronic journalism
Incoming Skype, a dreaded email
Israeli soldiers took one of our reporters to jail
Mazin's wife says he was in a peaceful demonstration
Now brutal arrest, handcuffs, jail, and frustration
No treatment for this writer in a first-aid station
Just abusive treatment by an apartheid nation
And I really have to be the confessor
Even I thought Israel would extend humanity to an esteemed professor
Then that day Franklin, Salem writer and human rights lawyer
Was shot by 'rebels' in bushes - a courage of voyeurs
Those bastards in Tripoli - the hounds of the west
Funded by EU and US interests, will now never let peace rest
Truth is, the duty of relating otherwise untold news
Falls on our shoulders, and some pay the dues
Sometimes we cover combat without fear
Like Ken O'Keefe as bullets fly near
We watch these things with our heart in our throat
Knowing the chances of the networks covering it, at best highly remote
Other times the results are grim
Vik was murdered on his way to a gym
To the hateful cowards who cut journalists down
You really are nothing, you know nothing of bounds
State terrorism governments are morally ill
That's required for a country to slaughter journalists at will
We'd like to see you in world court getting grilled
Tyrants and thugs locked forever in prison, all violence stilled
Your guns make you weak even as you kill
Shove down your throat, that bitter pill
Every journalist victim had more courage than you
You're lower than pigs and dogs, the scum on shoes
Locked in a pursuit of justice for voiceless, we refuse to apologize for reporting the truth.
- Tim King, Salem-News.com news editor
Tim King: Salem-News.com Editor and Writer
Tim King in 2008, covering the Iraq War
Tim King has more than twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. Tim is Salem-News.com's Executive News Editor. His background includes covering the war in Afghanistan in 2006 and 2007, and reporting from the Iraq war in 2008. Tim is a former U.S. Marine.
Tim holds awards for reporting, photography, writing and editing from The Associated Press the National Coalition of Motorcyclists, the Oregon Confederation of Motorcycle Clubs, Electronic Media Association and The Red Cross In a personal capacity, Tim has written 2,026 articles as of March 2012 for Salem-News.com since the new format designed by Matt Lintz was launched in December, 2005.
Serving readers with news from all over the globe, Tim's life is literally encircled by the endless news flow published by Salem-News.com, where more than 100 writers contribute stories from 20+ countries and regions.
Tim specializes in writing about political and military developments worldwide with an emphasis on Palestine and Sri Lanka, Iraq and Afghanistan, and the U.S. Marines. You can write to Tim at this address: email@example.com. Visit Tim's Facebook page (facebook.com/TimKing.Reporter)
View articles written by Tim King
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