Another Way

I’m wearing Honest Abe on my feet

And so I’ve got to tell the truth

And People

We are not

Doing well.

Even though the numbers keep going up and up

Our hands are chained to promises

And dreams the owners spin with honey words

Think big, think bigger

Till the thoughts you are, paint you the gods of all you see

The priesthood of billionaires

Controlled by tiny glowing screens

And free-to-play digital drugs

With in-app purchases which is insult

To our injury

Because People

We are the product and the means of production

Our hands and hearts have learnt understanding

We are the kin

Of trees and tomato plants that volunteer

To spin the killing carbon air into living poetry

While we watch out of the corner of our eyes

Too slow to see

Too big to ignore

Too valuable to throw away

Too lavishly abundant to hoard

So let me ask you

Good People

If our hands and hearts already know these things

When do our minds catch up?

I mean what’s the punch line,

That killer turn of phrase that lands the tension built

In generations

In the earth

The sliding foundation of the world

Our mother swollen

Before the Labor pains erupt

When does the understanding wake

us up and shake

the owner’s hands,

The scourge that keeps our dreams in place,

the honest question met with brutal blow?

When do we straighten our backs

Bent far, too long, below the sun that gives

Above the waters slowly rising

And look the owners in the eye

With love like only disobedient children can muster

Feel it?

Fear is shaking the earth

Or is it hopeful birth, reverberating back

From a moment so cataclysmic it will bend

The future and the past

Like a singular giant, dark and calm, pushing water miles high, in waves, stopping time

Pulling change forward, in, back out

And in the center, at the root

Steady, calm

There sits a mother with her child

In another kind of womb

Cinder blocks and EV glass

Furniture identical to what’s in the waiting room, industrial, designed to endure and not to comfort

As the bills collect

And clouds twist their lofty spiral arms around her

A tiny life breathes in

And out


And out


We take

That air the trees exhale and wake

Fingers holding understanding,

Holding soil, dark

And dense

Our roots deep, long, and strong

Our branches tall and proud

Our voices true and loud

We look with love into the Masters’ eyes

In waking song, in fierce devotion to the soil below, to each other and ourselves

We grow


As clock hands grind their way around

Our bonds no longer present

The understanding in our hearts and heads and hands

Speaking honesty,

Friends, breathe in the truth,

And let our feet begin to lead us

to another way.