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 freethehumblefarmer.com). 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.


272 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Caption: HCFA-1500 Forms are Required, Credit: Susan Cook
When women exercise reproductive choice, are her reasons for doing so protected as a private communication between a provider and a patient?

  • Added: May 31, 2019
  • Length: 06:47
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Legislators in Maine and across the country debate now bills to limit Reproductive Rights. Their limited or completely absent knowledge of the dep...

  • Added: May 25, 2019
  • Length: 07:09
Caption: "The Arc of the moral universe is long but it moves toward justice."., Credit: Susan Cook
The Sixty Second Moral Inquiry today asks if Alabama's long history of lack of compassion toward people of color now appears again in their lack of...

  • Added: May 20, 2019
  • Length: :54
Caption: Boddhisaatva Vow
A Buddhist teacher talking about Compassion told the story of the leader ripping open his vein to feed a starving stranger. Bodily acts coming out...

  • Added: May 18, 2019
  • Length: 08:09
Caption: DoD Deputy Shanahan said the Pentagon didn't think they'd pass an independent audit and they didn't..., Credit: Susan Cook
Fifty-four cents of every federally appropriated dollar goes to the Defense Department budget. Exactly where, the Pentagon auditors find "impossibl...

  • Added: May 10, 2019
  • Length: 08:36
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The murders of four children at the hands of caretakers were adjudicated by Maine's court system recently. As the last days of a child whose grandf...

  • Added: Apr 06, 2019
  • Length: 07:17
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A recent Fresh Air interview with Heidi Schreck about the Supreme Court recognition of privacy as the premise for a woman's right to control her ow...

  • Added: Mar 21, 2019
  • Length: 07:28
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I have for months tried to figure out the loose association that comes to mind when my voice-activated GPS begins. After Paul Manafort's sentencin...

  • Added: Mar 11, 2019
  • Length: 05:56
Caption: Exactly how many marshmellows were involved is probably in his tax returns..., Credit: Susan Cook
In the Dept. of Poetic Justice (and Reckoning) with lyrics for the Great American Wrongbook!

  • Added: Mar 01, 2019
  • Length: 02:09
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A lyrical tribute to a history buff who just might have the Big picture (and a certain State of the Union address) in his back pocket!

  • Added: Feb 06, 2019
  • Length: 03:37
Caption: The Sword of Damocles, Credit: Susan Cook
Quick and to the point! Citizens' Guides adapted from Greek myths, proverbs and so on.

  • Added: Jan 26, 2019
  • Length: 01:23
Caption: Downward facing dog..., Credit: Susan Cook
Great American Wrong Book lyrics for Mr. Bannon, now that 6 of his former campaign colleagues have been indicted.

  • Added: Jan 25, 2019
  • Length: 02:47
Caption: The Wrech of the Rebecca Douglass, the last Coaster to Sail Downeast, Credit: Susan Cook
A musical tribute to Newt Gingrich, sung to a tune from "How do you solve a Problem Like Maria?" from "The Sound of Music". Music is one of the f...

  • Added: Jan 14, 2019
  • Length: 05:37
Caption: "...Should old fish stories be forgot and never allowed to surface..., Credit: Susan Cook
To the tune from Auld Lang Syne - for the Great American Wrongbook- a musical tribute to say farewell to the past and anticipate a more visionary ...

  • Added: Dec 30, 2018
  • Length: 05:46
Caption: Santa Claus pays it forward..., Credit: Susan Cook
Musical tribute with Santa Claus paying attention to who's marginal and who's not!

  • Added: Jan 05, 2019
  • Length: 02:10
Caption: "May all beings be well and happy, May all beings be harmonious and peaceful, May all have the light, The way out of suffering, The way home..., Credit:  Bodhisaatva Vow
Some holiday recommendations for divorced parents, the American Bar Association and all who re-cast the spell of Santa Claus every year.

  • Added: Dec 17, 2018
  • Length: 08:12
Caption: Species: jodchumaryliz.newjerszeyish.corruptus, Credit: Susan Cook
As Maine's new Governor has formed a transition team. A "How to Honor the Public Trust Guide" might be helpful.

  • Added: Dec 05, 2018
  • Length: 08:59
Caption: Climate change will make Florida much hotter..., Credit: Susan Cook
A musical tribute to a special soon-to-be-retiring Government Elected! George Gershwin might not mind if you sing this to his 1937 "They Can't Take...

  • Added: Nov 15, 2018
  • Length: 03:51
Caption: There are race tracks that run horses daily...Picking ponies a good gig...", Credit: Susan Cook
A musical tribute to polling before Election Day! In the Department of Poetic Justice (and Reckoning) with lyrics for "The Great American Wrongboo...

  • Added: Nov 05, 2018
  • Length: 03:20
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Insurers who raise health care premiums, systematically deflect accountability for increases as necessary to cover rising health care costs. Deduc...

  • Added: Nov 02, 2018
  • Length: 07:48