Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The Answer

This is a poetic version of the piece below.

I don’t know the answer —
mayhem followed by magic.
First Baton Rouge, then Falcon Heights,
followed by a coda of death in Dallas.
Then, as if to send in the clowns,
the young female gymnasts —
white, black, Hispanic —
twirling themselves through the air,
swinging on bars like monkeys,
landing firm on their feet,
statuesque to loud applause,
then coming off to embraces by teammates.

I don’t know the answer
to mayhem followed by magic,
to hatred followed by love.
Perhaps it lies in the question
if asked and asked and asked again
by millions demanding an answer.

Monday, July 11, 2016

A Dose of Sanity

After Baton Rouge, Falcon Heights and Dallas, I thought my TV would turn blood red. I needed a dose of sanity. So on Sunday night I watched the women's gymnastic Olympic trials. 

For me the horror of the week-that-was ended on an up note. Not only did I sit in awe of the incredible feats these girls performed, but what they did after each one turned a remarkable routine brought me that dose of sanity I needed: Hugs all around. The young contestants — white, black, Hispanic — hugged each other in a display that at any other time would have seemed to be nothing more than team spirit, but coming on the heels of the racism and hatred that resulted in seven deaths, it seemed ironic and was a welcome counterpoint to those tragedies.

And yet watching those incredible young women perform and relate so warmly to each other was a dose of sanity, it wasn't a cure. There will be more racial animosity and more deaths before we fully live up to our Declaration's most famous line: “All men are created equal.”

Saturday, July 9, 2016

The Donald's Hair

A word or two about his hair,
that golden carpet fore and aft,
a miracle of tonsorial craft
unique in style not seen elsewhere.

How does he secure it when abed?
Perhaps it's covered with a net
to keep its strands safely set —
kingly crown on kingly head.

And when he struts his regal way
his gleaming coif stands out a mile —
so different from the rank-and-file
they spot the man who's holding sway.

He wears his crown for pride and show
while managing his shady deals,
not caring that his hair reveals
the ego that's encased below.