A wide spot in my imagination.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

When the Noise of an Election is Stilled

With apologies (actually, with gratitude) to Howard Thurman and to the framers of the Constitution, here is a bit of post-Election Day verse:

When the speeches of the campaign are over,
When TV ads return to hawking Viagra and dog food,
When the winners begin measuring the drapes for their new offices,
When the losers cry a bit and begin plotting for next time,
When the election signs blow off into the trees of vacant lots,
The work of democracy begins:
To form a more perfect union,
To establish justice,
To insure domestic tranquility,
To provide for the common defense,
To promote the general welfare,
To secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.

In case you don't recognize the inspirations for this poem, the first six lines are inspired by Howard Thurman's poem, "When the Song of the Angels is Stilled," which printed below.   The last six lines are lifted directly from the Preamble to the United States Constitution.


"When the Song of the Angels Is Stilled"
by Howard Thurman

When the song of the angels is stilled,When the star in the sky is gone,When the kings and the princes are home,When the shepherds are back with their flocks,The work of Christmas begins:To find the lost,To heal the broken,To feed the hungry,To release the prisoner,To rebuild the nations,To bring peace among people,To make music in the heart.

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