The shelves of supermarkets
are dependent on farmers,
both foreign and domestic
dependent on bankers—
on tractor drivers, irrigators and brown skin labor,
both legal and illegal
looking for a better life
to fill the trucks for grocery stores
that fill our families’ bellies.
We are dependent on the weather and electricity
to pump the water
to grow the crops for harvest.
We are dependent on our phones and Internet
to keep in touch
with skewed news and friends
lest we find ourselves alone
for an hour—lest we begin
to know our minds
or even reason for ourselves.
We are dependent on the politicians
dependent on corporate donations
as they campaign to stay
close to the feed bunks,
instead of representing
the workingman trying
to pay for his consumption.
We are dependent on the planet
as we carve up the heart
of its landscape, as we spend
its resources today
instead of saving for tomorrow.
We are dependent on one another
for love and understanding,
for common sense
And lastly, we are dependent on God
and hope to hell
He’s paying attention.
Yea, once a great nation of statesmen and orators
forging principles, annealed by fire, an ethic
shaped with hammer to anvil. Yea, we once were
the envy of the world, yeoman and scholars free
to speak the truth despite their fears—despite our need
to be greater than we are, we fool ourselves.
Four percent of the planet’s population, we are small,
leaving the elite to run this country into the ground
as we consume like feedlot cattle with credit extended
at 25 percent—we have become vassals to the bankers
on Wall Street—our greatness measured by their numbers
with little else left of value to speak or be proud of.
Once a great nation, we are an embarrassment
to humanity, to a once common sense—
we follow the pack like scavengers praying for a bone
until we blindly consume ourselves without wisdom
or compassion. Where are our senators and statesmen?
Have we forgotten who we were, once upon a time?
Our day never done
instead of politics:
all the pig-headed
pontificators hawking lies
like sideshow barkers.
A nation sick to death
trying to get back to normal
we’ll never see again.
We ride this wild earth,
hang-on with gentle hand
feeling for a familiar rhythm.
Brand new day
in some places waiting
for the last egg to crack
from the inside out.
Metaphor for everything
that matters, exploding
to the four winds,
blindly finding legs
hard to corral
with shrill words
they’ve never heard
We waited ages,
marked it with a rock
in the gravel drive.
Only the lesser man regards himself
as superior, assured and measured
by the whims of fleeting fortune—
he clings to hackneyed slogans
like jetsam in the raging river’s storm.
Beef dressed in a layer of white fat,
you cannot tell the color of its hide
on the rail, when cut and wrapped
in butcher paper, or ground to satisfy
your convenient consumption.
In this global herd of humanity,
fear is the currency of exchange
rekindled with falsehoods
propagated by impromptu scripts
to be played by bad actors.
This is not the only show on earth!
Do not be afraid to respect a man’s
hands and heart, learn to look him
in the eye and listen to a rhythm
common beneath your skin.