Turns Poetic

9th December 2005
through Helen Engel

My dear brothers and sisters.

There is rarely a moment as the one of expectancy.
Expectancy of what?
Of global warming?
Of climate change?
Of economic reform?
Of peace around the world?
Of no more killing of one man by another?
Of no babies born unwanted by mother or father?

Expectancy of what?
Of rivers running dry?
Of mountains collapsing into the sea?
Of the sun burning forests, making land become desert?

Expectancy of what?
Of the coming of peace to one man's heart?
To one woman's heart?
Of joy coming to an abandoned babe?
Of the sight of food to a starving mother and child?

Of the rich being murdered by the poor?
Of all nations seeking restitution for evil done unto them by us?
Of blacks killing whites?
Of Muslims torturing Christians?

What is there an expectancy about?
Of a crocus peeking out in March?
Of a rainbow after a rain?
Of a daffodil in the spring breeze?
Of a child's delight?

What are you expectant of?
A son coming home from war?
An ailing father cured of cancer?
Peace between two brothers?
A lost boy found?

What are you expectant of?
If you expect it hard enough,
Will it occur?
Will your dead son return from battle?
Will the desert bloom again?
Will the smog clear?
Will the water be purified?

Who cares?
Who has eyes to see?
Who wonders where it will end?
Is it up to you?
Is it up to me?

Do I need to speak up?

I am Abraham Lincoln
I am your conscience.
We have allowed our nation to fall into the mire.
We have done it together.
We have allowed God to be taken from the schools.
We have condoned unacceptable relations between people.
We have not spoken up about crime
and treachery and violence.
Now we are paying the price.
When will it end?

When you stand up;
When you move, arm in arm
To the nation's capitol,
To your state capitol
To your church doors,
To the principal of the school,
To the judges of the land.
To the owners of the newspapers,
To those who violate drug laws.
To those who kill.

I am Abraham Lincoln,
And I ask you to look in the mirror,
And see yourself.
Do you weep when a babe dies in Africa?
Do you mourn when thousands die in an earthquake?
Where is the heart of America?
In the bars?
Rooted to violent movies?

But where is the heart of America?

Come, beloved souls,
Let us stand up and be counted.
And every day until this uncivil war is over.

Your loving brother.


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