Deja vu: an open letter to those in power

Before the rise of Hitler

Before he changed the world

The world was full of ordinary men

Who, swept up in the fright,

Turned into monsters murdering

Without heart

Without soul

Without a shred of decency

Forgetting lessons learned at mother’s knee

and in lover’s arms

Rejecting their humanity

 

I ask you now, dear senators

And congressmen and generals

To look inside your beating hearts

Stare deep into the mirror

What will it take to turn you from citizen and patriot

To full-blown monster,

devoid of conscience

devoid of character

devoid of hope

Eternity is long and unforgiving

Remember this today

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Time Capsule

Today we’re witnessing the sealing of a time capsule in San Ramon. Sending it off to the future, unknown, with a poem!

Today I walked with my old friends

through the city where we raised our kids

who are now raising kids of their own

A walk through time and space

 

So much has changed

So much has not

Beneath our feet, thirty years have passed

Beneath this street, one hundred more

have come and gone,

gone in a heartbeat, in a blink, in the wink of an eye

 

Some old folks still remember farms and fields unsettled

one room schoolhouses and the general store

but even they can’t reach back to the

once upon a time when stagecoaches

carrying weary travelers across these hills

were seen as modern wonders

before the landscape changed,

paved over, time and time again

 

We cannot hold the future

We cannot make time stop

Someday our faded photographs, dug up here and displayed

will seem as quaint and dated as those of yesteryear

Someday this home we loved and tended

called ours for just this little while

will recall our lasting legacy, our place in history

time-capsule

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Eating Lo Mein with Amy Bloom

I want to crawl inside Amy Bloom’s head
I want to plant the bulb of my story into the fertile soil
of her brain,
let the roots take hold,
watch the green shoots erupt

We sit outside – even though the sky is gray
Amy Bloom doesn’t worry about the rain
Her voice is like an underground jazz club
smoky and mysterious,
edgy,
as if her vocal chords are plucking a base cello

I sheepishly twirl noodles around my fork.

(Sourced from an interview: http://www.thefourthriver.com/index.php/the-heart-of-what-i-want-to-tell-you-about-is-not-the-place-a-conversation-with-amy-bloom

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A rallying cry

 

The sky grows darker day by day

The ghosts cry out their warning

We’re past the point of no return and idly standing by

Speak up, speak out, shout out the truth

Or forever hold our peace, our lives, our liberty in chains

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Of thee I sing

 

cemetery

The sky is threatening rain today

this day after the day after the day after

still I travel on

aimlessly passing strangers hugging signs and sorrows

heads down

eyes hooded,

lost in our collective quiet shame

 

In fading afternoon light

I pass a cemetery of the revolution

where thin and fragile tombstones

draped in dropped November leaves

stand as witness to our history,

America the Beautiful lies buried here

lost and restless deep below

 

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Friday Benediction

A little kindness today please

A little big picture thinking

A little love your neighbor as yourself

It shouldn’t be that hard. We’re all in this together.

 

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Poetry in Motion

race-for-ed

Pavement slick with oily puddles

and storm-battered leaves

Rain day race begins

parents and principals slip and slide

while a crush of kids blast past

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