Thursday, April 13, 2017

Why We Have Come ~ a poem by Troy Skeels

We have come because
the trees are in blossom
because the wind tugs at our sleeves
we come because the ocean has brought us here
many times

We have come because a man
once held a fresh page to the light
and declared tyranny dead

we have come because a woman
refused to keep to her place

We have come because the planet brought us
on its way around the sun

trees hold onto the sky and breathe the rooted earth
singing deep songs of oxygen

bees roam between flowers and the moon
weaving genetic strands in the ageless spiraling dance

restless elephants push against their diminishing range
tear through fences looking for food
never imagining fences.

We are people
and this is what we do

We have come to say
the planet will not be privatized
the holy ground will not be sanitized
people are not numbers to be erased

we are tired of insider deals cut in rooms
full of plush carpets and air conditioning
while families starve in the sweltering doorways

sick from the sludge of poorly digested dollars
oozing from the sewers and washing the shopping malls
in the stench

development loans that build dictators' palaces
and prison factories
while charging the people
for the chains that enslave them
and the bullets that kill them
plus interest

We have come because we have followed long trails of blood
to this place
and we are asking to see your hands

we have come because we looked in the mirror today
and we saw that you were us
and we are trying to change

we have come because we are here
because we have been taught to stand
because we were born

because an endless river brought us here

- Troy Skeels

[First posted 6 October 2007]