Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Cheyenne artist takes many pieces and creates a work of peace

Cheyenne artist Forrest King took these items from Sept. 11 ceremony...
...and constructed this work of art seen in background at International
Day of Peace ceremony in Herschler Building.
Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead penned a proclamation marking Sept. 21 at the International Day of Peace. At today's lunchtime ceremony at the Herschler Building honoring this day of peace, the Rev. Rodger McDaniel read the proclamation because the Gov was busy with the "lying in state" events for the late U.S. Sen Malcolm Wallop.

Gov. Mead's proclamation mentioned the United Nations many times. The International Day of Peace originated in the U.N. in 1981 and was first celebrated on Sept. 21 in 2002. I couldn't help but wonder how nuts the proclamation would make Gov. Mead's U.N.-hating Tea Party followers. They'll never read it, of course. But if they did, heads would be exploding all over Wyoming.

Sen. Wallop was no fan of the U.N. or of peacenik ways. He was a Cold Warrior, one of Ronald Reagan's staunchest supporters.  I doubt if the International Day of Peace ever deserved a ceremony, much less a mention, at Sen. Wallop's digs in Sheridan County.

My thoughts were not in keeping with the peace and justice ways of today's ceremony. But that's how it goes when you've spent two decades as an outlier in the reddest of red states.

Cheyenne's International Day of Peace featured fine words by Christian, Jewish, Muslim and UU leaders. Music too. And a work of art by local artist Forrest King.

At the Sept. 11 commemoration at the State Capitol, Forrest collected mementos from different faith communities. These items represented the brokenness of 9/11. Forrest was charged with bringing a sense of hope to these materials via his art.

And he did. Forrest is sending more photos. For now, the above images show the items from the Sept. 11 ceremony and the sculpture fashioned by Forrest. I'll do a more complete description of the work in future posts.

I leave you with the words that Rev. McDaniel left us with: "All in Peace. Go in Peace. Create in Peace. Live in Peace."


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