Thursday, May 1, 2008

Being Woman

Positioning of Power II

What power lies beneath to build or destroy.

What power lies beneath to be direct or coy.

What power lies beneath to conquer or subsume.

What power lies beneath to create or doom.

What power lies beneath to embrace or withdraw.

What power lies beneath to control wherewithal.

What power lies beneath to be or not to be.

What power lies beneath to answer assuredly.

What power lies beneath to be human and divine.

What power lies beneath to take what's wholly thine.

What power lies beneath to proportion or gouge.

What power lies beneath to belabor and hound.

What power lies beneath to think intuitively.

What power lies beneath to act innovatively.

Power is. Use it wisely. Much depends on this.

2 comments:

John O'Leary said...

Judith, this reminds me of something I read in a review of Joseph Nye's "The Powers to Lead." Nye - who in the past has argued for the US to incorporate some "soft power" in its international dealings - says we need to use "smart power" which includes both soft and hard power. This requires "contextual intelligence" - being sensitive to the evolving environment in which we're operating so we respond appropriately. Nye's lament is that US leadership in recent years has been too one-dimensional in dealing with the shifting winds f the Mideast.

judith ellis said...

I would agree with Joseph Nye. The only possible problem I see is that all soft power is not soft and all hard power is not hard. Perhaps Margaret Thatcher and Dwight D. Eisenhower are such examples. The latter was a hero both militaristicaly and socially.

Having said that, I fully understand his point and would agree for the need for "contextual intelligence." What a beautiful concept. Thanks, John, for this useful information. I will do some research on Mr. Nye.