Thursday, August 29, 2019

We Must Not Go Back©
I gave a ride to
     a student of color
The Mayor said why don't
     you go back where you came from
          I was closer home than he was
               so I reminded him
Half a century later xenophobia
     fans the flames still
          shreds human dignity
               incites the worst
Fed by incipient racism
     metastasized in culture
          all are victims
Relentlessly searching
     for an antidote
Racism our national debt
     pay it with justice                                           
          underwrite our future
It costs too much                                                                 
     to go back

When I had my Dad's old 1964 Volkswagen truck restored, I replaced the small outside rear view mirror with a much larger one. I knew that if I was going to drive it with its fifty horsepower engine I needed to have a clear view of what was behind me. That old truck became a treasure trove of stories but more than that, it became a metaphor. It is enough for me to say here that as important as the past is, if we don't learn and move forward we lose our way. There's nothing new in today's blood-letting racism and bone-chilling attacks on all those who differ from the perpetrators who themselves have lost their way. Except that we are gradually but surely accepting it as normal. It's enough to make one cry-- or look for a way out. We see our past clearly. Here's to new dimensions.

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