GOING FORWARD

Yes, going forward sounds easy – yet we’ve crossed so many rivers roiled with havoc. We’ve bridged  so many valleys made lower with  doubt. 

I cry at the memory of what was my sincere hatred of unhappy people – who’ve made the world unhappier.  I’ve gone to bed at night with hatred and doubt my personal valets only to awake with the only question left; WHY?  That word is the leash that has lashed me to the mast of hope.  

Going forward I will walk with hope open in one hand and doubt doubled in the other. I will hope with all the tears of the mothers who’ve lost children to the systemic hatred of the patriarchy. I will hope with all the tears of those who wait to come into our own troubled land knowing this despairing country is far better than the despair they’ve left. I will hope and be washed clean with all the tears of those who’ve  marched for justice in the streets and the courts. Those who know that when injustice is leveled at ONE it is leveled at us ALL. I will walk forward with all the hope fashioned from the depths of  a four-year-old misery. I will walk forward knowing my purpose; that justice is never achieved by detachment but through hard work – one foot in front of the other until my feet are worn and rent with protest.  

There is no valley of peace – I know now – every hiatus in the struggle, however warm with camaraderie, can be stolen and used against me. Against justice. The thieves of justice will never sleep.  I’ve had four years to learn this.  And I am, going forward, a damned good student! 

QUARANTINE: Week Two

    cropped-sunset3651.jpg

Like our electronic toys

The world has a reset button

When we ignore her overheating

She admonishes with flames

When we foul our nests

She sends the oceans in retort

And when we ignore the world’s health,

Its inhabitants’ well-being,

Choosing to chase vicious luxuries

Because – we can

She sends the enemy invisible

The virus incurable,

Barely namable

Scoffing dreams and schemes

Our world has reset

An algorithm for stimulus

Six-degrees of separation

Leaves room for empathy

We leave food for the hungry

We drive the immobile

We care for the sick

We handsomely tip the daring

Souls who venture into the

Empty streets of commerce

Bringing food to those of us with money – to eat

But, the natural world wants us

To open our eyes

She wants us apart enough

To see those lives

That will never change – even with

A conquered virus

She wants us to see the fallacy of

Putting profit before people

She wants us to see those

Who have always been

Quarantined by poverty

In spirit and in purse

Yes, the world has reset.

Sadly, the culling

Won’t be equitable

 

Reset people

Reset!

 

A Country For No Child

Jaime Kalenga, whose mother died in labor, suffers from malnutrition and tuberculosis. Credit Nicholas Kristof/The New York Times
Jaime Kalenga, whose mother died in labor, suffers from malnutrition and tuberculosis. Credit Nicholas Kristof/The New York Times

There is a country rich in diamonds,

Oil and foreign sports cars

I know this – having read it in

The Times

This is a country in which one child

In six will die before the age of five

Says The Times’ Kristof

But I live in a country that cares

About children – Some of us

Care so much we call authorities

On parents whose children walk

Home from the park – alone

Keeping our children absurdly safe

Ignoring the Angolan mother holding

The “twig limbs,” swollen belly, wizened face

Of the near carcass that is her child

She’s waiting for care from the few who do

Those people who come from far off places to nurse and

Heal everyone’s children

Those people who know that diamonds

Are friend to no one

The people who recognize

The diamond’s sparkle

Being stolen everyday

From the eyes of babies

Leaving in its place a

Haunted spectacle, skeletal frame

Held together in wrinkled brown

Wrappings of skin

PEACE: WHAT IF…

Dry tortugas

What if Peace was publicly traded

In every heart and highly rated

 

At the center on a trading floor

Waved slips for goodwill, ceasefires and more

 

What if Peace invested care

Opened hearts with earnings per share

 

What if Peace paid interest high

In harmonious treaties to ratify

 

Peace will need to be monetized

IPOs will be highly prized

     

Peace could trade in open exchange

Swords for ploughshares to be arranged

 

Peace stock values will rise with belief

No house of cards, dishonesty ceased

No slim margin in which to trade

All activity above moral grade

 

 But…

Peace is too polite to nail and rend

Old Wall Street brokers for their dividends

 

 

 

 

THE FERRY TO THE DRY TORTUGAS

Dry tortugas

 

 

 

 

Seats (the best) on the top deck

Draped with posh hotel

Towels – pulling double duty saving and drying the seat for

The entitled; the family of five with a guest

 

Middle age couple #1 she holding desperately his hand

He looking like he stole time

Deciding on the white island linen shirt

The #2 she, face a beautiful forlorn ruin looking

Into the shoulder she married.

A shoulder that is turned away from her

As her husband talks across his son’s girlfriend (who feigns sleep)

Explaining something

Important (?) to his namesake

 

The young pale and married couple next to us Russian (?)

He sits away from the rays reading a thick paperback

She sits yoga in the sun

 

Two lovers at the rail; beautiful

Unnoticing of the lame (who are now walking)

And the blind (who are now seeing)

When he of receding hairline & confidence

grabs at her hips

She shimmy’s away

Ignorant of the finite attracting powers of good skin

She stands away a bit – the coy mistress, eyeing him

As the lusty gulf wind whips at her hem

Revealing everyone’s wish