Saturday, November 30, 2013

kindness

Kindness--
I aspire to it.
Think of the martyred saints secure in Heaven with their reward!

If it had been me,
I would have pulled the arrows out and made bones of them;
I'd have stood up out of the fire pit and made somebody pay.

I picture myself sanguine,
mild as milk,
but sometimes I get tired.
The day goes on and on as if it were The Train Of Infinity
hogging the crossing on some devil-hot day,
and at times such as those, it may become necessary 
for me to pat you on your head,
replacing the bloody divot I have taken out of it.

Look at my hands!
Soft and harmless, now, as unbaked dough.
I only ever have the best of intentions,
and that has served me well in my job with the Highway Department.

Do you think you could trust me again
some day,
in some bright future where mobs are made lazy 
by a surfeit of love and patient understanding?
Or will you will yourself to die just to get the ear of God
and talk shit about me?

Kindness
is my watchword and my natural way.
That's what I'll be explaining, hoping for acquittal,
pro se, having to do everything myself--
getting the pencils and pens,
getting my own glass of water,
getting the maximum,
getting the legal pads, the table itself, the chair.
________

 

5 comments:

hedgewitch said...

Quite a graceful statement of self-knowledge, and of the hell we all live in learning to accept our limitations, and reluctantly value the scar tissue that is *so* ugly but keeps us from disintegrating,after all, even if perhaps we'd like to be more...elegant about it all--all while aspiring to be 'good,' whatever that is--kind is easier I think, though not easy at all. The last stanza is a bit chilling--always a bit scary to think we may get what's coming to us--either way--even more so if we're giving it to ourselves. Or so I read. Fine writing, Shay. I like it very much.

Jannie Funster said...

any one who would ever talk sh$t about you would obviously be misguided. xo

Marcoantonio Arellano said...

I enjoyed the last stanza where you have brought your own pencil and legal pad, your own table and chair, your own glass of water...
you're ready to defend yourself which is admirable because kindness is a virtue given when all around you are blind of it and they give you shit.

I so love hedgewitch's input

Mama Zen said...

The Train of Infinity hogging the crossing . . . that is just so perfect!

HansHB said...

Lovely poem, nice photo!