Saturday, August 27, 2011


Humanity's greatness is measured
By the extent of its capacity for evil
No shoah diminishes a third
The thickness of the smoke makes the cry of the horns
That much more extraordinary, as the numbers of the dead
Attest to the significance of a single word
Basin Street speaks as surely to the honor of the middle passage
As do all the unmarked graves and forgotten names
Would you not speak for me if you could?
Between famine and poetry there is so much, a world, the world
Made with so much space in which to place your belief
Wherein acts of kindness between strangers go uncharted
Yet are not lesser than that which is remembered
If god dies each time we do, how much greater is your faith
That which dies so often must be immortal; for each fire, there must be a song
I've heard the hymns of poor people, and they are beautiful
You've seen murals painted on walls, and forgiveness in the eyes of the wronged
      We are forgiven each day, this is salvation
      A tale is told of a condemned man who spent every one
      Of his last days chipping his name into stone
      With a spoon; such is our time on this earth
      Would you have stand for you that inscription
      Or the prison; I tell you that man was saved
      Brighter shine the sufferers than each honorable man in the street
A word, music, laughter, the touch of love -- you have this yet desire more?
Leave greatness for the ambitious; no bird apprehends the sky
You may have what you need; all else is theft
To a beggar, give money, not advice
To the tired, a bed
To the sad, a smile
To the lonesome, a friend
To Hamlet, sympathy
To the sleepless, a blanket
To children, devotion
Would you ask for more: You are more deserving than the others
Do only that workd for which you would ask no recompense
Anything to which a price is attached is defiled
Defend your own, and leave others to do the same
Without giving cause; each is permitted to dream in their own way
You are entitled to your share
You can save no one else, but give help when asked
As you will be; no one escapes
Believe in spite of, not because
All the evidence to the contrary
And you will not miss this chance to be distinguished
Any more than daylight can be extinguished
By the coming of night, which reigns only in opposition
Each man's death becomes his station
There is no safer place for captains and kings
Ten thousand were drowned that never were born;
A peasant wrote that
Music is the sounds between the silence, and
You can play it on your porch, sitting down
That which is greatest is not inevitable


The little marshes of desolation make one wonder           
How did a soccer ball get so far downstream
In water not even deep enough to float a dream?
And what does the green ribbon mean?