Letter to the Future

What can you do but judge us by our actions?
Seldom did we believe you were our children.
We fouled your nest beyond recognition.
You have no idea what this world once was,
How rugged and wild, how bountiful, how pristine.
What you behold are remnants, ghosts, shadows �
Bare mountains, polluted waters, depleted soil,
Cities gasping for air. You cannot walk on a mossy path
Beside a forest stream. We have stolen that joy.
Instead, you are slaves to your inheritance.

And yet, we had our dreams. We, who created God
In our image, dreamed of peace, even while at war.
We, who denied truth and kept her in a cage,
Dreamed of freedom, even as fellow humans starved.
We, who tore down bridges and tried to own the stars,
Dreamed of justice, then slammed the prison door.
If only you would judge us by our dreams.
But what right have we to ask? Better it would be to
Drag us screaming from our graves to hear you say,
See what you have done! See how we must live!

That alone would be fair. Or is there love within you still,
And the power to forgive? Are there those among you
Who keep our dreams alive? Have you finally found a way
To live without weapons and war, and commerce born of fear?
Did you heed the long, sad history of our mistakes?
Or are these vain hopes, meant only to assuage our guilt?
And if they are, if you are still at war, if you still worship
Your stark, sane image in the mirror, what will you tell your
Own children? Will they, your bastard kin, curse and say,
See what you have done! See how we must live?

April 30, 2005

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Also by William Michaelian

Winter Poems

ISBN: 978-0-9796599-0-4
52 pages. Paper.
Another Song I Know
ISBN: 978-0-9796599-1-1
80 pages. Paper.
Cosmopsis Books
San Francisco

Signed copies available

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