The Peace Pole | AspenTimes.com

The Peace Pole

Paul E. Anna

Missiles in North Korea. Baghdad in civil strife. Beirut under fire. It seems the world is a very dangerous place. And when we look for solutions the government and the United Nations don’t seem to offer much in the way of hope.So who you gonna call?How about the Girl Scouts? Specifically Troop No. 265 of Basalt, Colorado. While on the face of it, they would seem to be an odd choice to fix the problems of the world they, at least, have made a step in the right direction by erecting a monument to peace that clearly spells out a message of hope.The monument is called the Peace Pole, and it sits on a lawn in downtown Basalt in front of the Town Hall in the shadow of the flagpole. It is a simple but profound ode to the idea that we are all the same and we should all treat each other with respect and dignity.”This is a pole of peace standing in the ground. To let every soul know that peace is still around,” reads the first stanza of a poem that is etched on a steel plate embedded in a rock at the base of the pole.The wooden pole, which looks like a modified telephone pole, has a simple steel globe in its center, with the world’s continents represented by metal plates. At the front of the globe is a pair of metal hands, clasped in a handshake of friendship and togetherness. Below the globe are a series of steel bands of different colors, wrapping the pole.”The green at the bottom of the pole is to help you understand, the importance of faith in yourself and your fellow man,” the embedded poem goes on. “The next four stripes of colors, yellow, black, red and white, stand for all the people of the world and how we can unite.”Atop the globe sits the rest of the wooden pole, and it has been etched with the words “Patz,” “Ruha” and “Pace,” all of which mean “peace” in different languages. Also inscribed is “Peace is the sound of love throughout the world.”Topping the monument is a metal star that, according to the poem, “Reminds us we all live under the same sun and sky.”The Peace Pole was dedicated on April 15 of last year and was the work of Girl Scouts Courtney Carrik, Theresa Gerdin, Kerri Kimmel, Megan Southward and Karlie Zajac.More than just selling cookies, these girls have presented a powerful message on a simple pole. It is a message that should be heard and heeded by the leaders of the world as they try to solve the their problems and disagreements.Perhaps we would all be better off if the Girl Scouts were in charge. Peace.