One More Time for Lu

A warning about weather blared
  “Emergency Flood Watch”
       as the rain pitter-pattered
        everywhere, filler
           of spaces in the earth
But a different warning came
     On June 18, 2010,
  When four protestors blocked
     The gate of Honeywell
         Declaring for the first time
     An “Emergency Nuke Watch”
Because the plant produced more than
  Triggers for nuclear weapons
Because toxic elements harmed workers
  Disrupted breathing, bequeathed cancer,
      2000 toxins in a list rolled out
         On a scroll by Lu Mountenay.
Now we meet in 2019 at the new plant
  The National Security Campus
      Knowing that persistent wars
         Are caused by too much money
            Driving weapon contractors
               To overlook the warnings
                   About annihilation.
The 2010 Feisty Four,
   The Lu’s of local fame,
      The global concern for a nuke-free earth
         The supporting community here today
            Are here for the cause of peace
Aware that we live
   In a world broken, hard-hearted,
      And still dare to mix sadness and hope
         Worthy of a Memorial Day.

   By Ron Faust, 5/27/19—The annual Memorial Day protest by PeaceWorks in Kansas City, Mo., draws attention to the nuclear weapons plant and calls for building a climate of peace instead of destruction. The 2010 Feisty Four has reference to Jane, Ron, Frank, and Steven (p. 29, A Room Full of Shadows). We also remember PeaceWorks-KC Board Member Lu Mountenay, who intended to protest this year for her fifth time, but died of cancer on Easter.

For several years at PeaceWorks’ Memorial Day witness, Lu carried a flag she made. This year, some of her family marched with the flag. Joy Simpson (daughter) is at left; Lu’s husband Tom is in the center; and granddaughters (left to right) are Addy Simpson, Tori Simpson, and Kayla Mountenay.—Photo by Mark Semet