If you don’t know the kind of person I am
and I don’t know the kind of person you are
a pattern that others may prevail in the world
and following the wrong god home we may miss our star.
And as elephants parade holding each elephant’s tail,
but if one wanders the circus won’t find the park,
I call it cruel and maybe the root of all cruelty
to know what occurs but not recognize the fact.
And so I appeal to a voice, to something shadowy,
a remote important region in all who talk;
though we could fool each other, we should consider—
lest the parade of our mutual life gets lost in the dark.
For it is important that awake people be awake,
or a breaking line may discourage them back to sleep;
the signals we give—yes or no, or maybe—
should be clear: the darkness around us is deep.
Have some poems you treasure that you’d like to share with fellow aid workers and do-gooders? Please send them my way at firstname.lastname@example.org!