"We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike." ~Maya Angelou

Monday, November 7, 2016

Poem: America,The Tattered and Torn

(I touch glowing keys in the darkness, and wait, uneasy.
The rain has begun, whispering through the last yellow leaves,
painting the air with silver lines. I am anxious about tomorrow.)

Tomorrow we vote, waiting in line for our turns,
tight lipped and determined. We will not be turned away.
We know we do not have the final say; but we stand anyway.

Our nation, with its history of courage and honor, is splintered,
a deep chasm has set friend against friend, sister against brother.
Both sides hold their positions with angry, bitter righteousness.

We have been fed lies from all sides. We can all agree on that.
All of us also agree that the government has become stuck.
Deciding which path to follow forward is where the disagreement lies.

We all love America, our own idea of what America is.
There is the rub, so we stream into the booths and have our say.
It is our right, our duty, to speak out, to stand up, to be heard.

It is not our right to do violence to each other, to dishonor
or demean, to deceive, or destroy.  We fought that fight once
already, losing an entire generation in bloodied blue and gray.

We are a large nation, varied to the extreme, and proud.
Most nations so large and varied are ruled by fear and pain,
punishment and corruption. We must not become such a place.

All of us are convinced that we are absolutely right, we
have forgotten compromise, the keystone in the arch.
Without it we fail to function and anger wins, over democracy.

Anger leads to irrationality and then to unthinking violence.
Innocent lives will be lost, hatred will flourish, and Liberty
will douse her shining lamp at last. We must try to fix this.   

Go to the polls. Go with your friends and greet your neighbors.
It is your right and your privilege to vote your conscience.
Afterward, whatever befalls, we must work together for America.

America is not the government. America is the people you meet
in the streets, in the shops, at your work, every day of the year.
We must soften our hearts and do the difficult work of reconciliation.

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