Refusal and Hope

A 2020 BC Election Poem

-Dan Hines

Sometimes hope is optimism.

I like those moments.

Sometimes hope can only be raw defiance.

Sometimes hope feels more like refusal.

It feels like refusal tonight.

I refuse.

I refuse to be silent.

I refuse to be limited to binary either/or reactions when I know a third way is possible.

I refuse to lie to myself that I can’t change any of this.

I refuse to be complacent as powerful corporate interests corrupt our politics.

I refuse to resist justice and reconciliation with First Peoples when I know the land is stolen.

I refuse to remain unaware of my white male privilege.

I refuse to accommodate myself to the meaningless destruction of so many species.

I refuse to just sit peacefully by our river and meditate, as the salmon disappear.

I refuse to allow another ancient forest to be destroyed for a few dollars and a few logs.

I refuse to permit our government to give another dollar of public funds, on top of the $ billions already handed over, to foreign fossil fuel companies to prop up a failing LNG industry.

I refuse to invest a penny more into the Site C dam when we all know it is a tragic disaster.

I refuse to believe that the vulnerable and marginalized are anyone but beloved children of God.

I refuse to withhold a safe supply of pharmaceutical alternatives to those struggling with addiction.

I refuse to be condemned to the paralysis of cynicism nor escapism.

I refuse to adapt to the unacceptable and unjust.

I refuse to forget who I am and whose I am.

I refuse to accept the label of being an idealist when I know I am a realist.


  1. ….and there are thousands refusing right along its you……thank you for this

  2. William Johnson · · Reply

    Thank you Dan, such heartfelt words and your courage continues to be inspiration. Stay well, Will

    1. Thanks so much Will and lovely to hear from you on the blog! Dan

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: