Can You Tell Me?
Seeking Truth ~ Philip Brent Harris
How can we in any way feel proud
Of the genocide of one people and
The enslavement of another people?
Both groups represent many tribes.
As we all do, though we name them
Other, nations, lands, areas or clans.
Yet, all of us people before any other
Thought, consideration, name, label.
Especially this last, our need to label
In order to reduce responsibility, so
We can limit what we are willing to
Know, our ability to acknowledge.
When, if ever, will we know, accept
The truth, that we are all together, all
One race living on a single planet we
Mark with our imaginary lines, labels.
Sometimes determined by geography.
Barriers of mountains, oceans, rivers,
Deserts, ravines, and long distances.
Once, these barriers isolated us long
Enough to allow us to develop other
Customs, language, superstition, fear,
Views of their world, where traveling
Was difficult, dangerous and suspect.
This is reasonable, but times changed,
Moving us closer together, growing in
Numbers, but not in species maturity.
Our social congress both connects us
And separates us more than in history.
More than any geographic boundaries.
Today, we stand together, side-by-side
Staring at small screens, mesmerized.
Pushed further from actual connection.
At the same time, we recreate in small
The insularity of villages, tribes, clans.
Strangers who assure us we’re worthy.
Somehow, we are all required to lead,
Follow, or get out of the bloody way.
We must realize that all of these will
Have a plus and minus if we embrace
Their meanings and precepts wholly.
Those who lead may do so driven by
Hate, love, fear, hubris, good or evil
All woven through in shades of gray.
Leaders and followers must realize
We may follow right for the wrong
Reasons or lead wrong for our right
Causes, which we believe are truth.
However, the greater majority of us,
All do our best to get out of the way,
so we remain unheard and unnoticed,
By leaders and their followers, who
Will target us and would trample us
under a trumpeted truth, their truth,
which is the blessed and only reality.
We know we might be swept up in
Joy, the bloody way slick with ours.
Truth is neither your truth nor mine.
How will we know, show the truth?
Can you tell me, will we ever learn?
Peace is Purpose, Nonviolence is Strength, Diversity is Unity, Empathy is Empowerment
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