Inauguration Day, 2017
The new patriot is a listener.
The new citizen talks to strangers.
The new continental congress convenes
at bus stops, taverns and cafes, parking lots
where neighbors pause (their shopping carts
with flour, milk, and eggs), to speak of justice,
honor, and honesty — while far to the east
a speech is being given in a foreign tongue.
Stand and Bow Down
“Keep your voice down and your head up
when trouble comes,” my father said.
“Shouting leads to blows, and blows
to everyone losing what the fight was for.”
I see the sturdy tree stand tall, then bend
when wind comes. I watch grass outlast the storm.
When a leader shouts, you have to listen better
than he knows how. You have to be what he might
learn to say, if you are eloquent in witness.
Image: We the People, Inauguration Protestor, licensed under CC 2.0