My heart has a memory for slights
that eclipses all introspection.
My soul knows that recognition
is a prologue for justice and healing.
My heart would be warm in a mob
that is bent on the redress of history.
My soul is so tired of fighting,
and will barter comeuppance for concord.
My heart wants to cling to its gold
and cast flinty glances at beggars.
My soul wants to live with less
for the sake of the harvest to come.
My heart and my soul wrestle on
as a man swears he’s ready to lead –
as he says he has rolled up his sleeves
and insists that it’s time to grow up.
My heart and my soul say a prayer -
as he says he believes in something
that prevails in the shattering gale –
my heart and my soul say a prayer.
A man my own age takes an oath
to the joy of a throng of admirers:
he ends with “so help me God.” –
and my heart and my soul say it with him.