Tuesday, January 17, 2017

POEMS FOR AN ASTERISK PRESIDENCY*

* For non-sports fans: an * is placed beside a record that is tainted because unusual circumstances or some kind of cheating contributed to it.

THE SECOND COMING
by: W. B. Yeats (1865-1939)

TURNING and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in the sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
                                  ________________________
                    
Rafael Jesús González 2017:

                  A woman said I was not polite
                   to the opposition,
                      that I was harsh
                        and did not encourage
                   discourse.

                      Perhaps if I were Christ,
                       I could say, "Forgive them
                              for they know not what they do."
                        Or the queen, and apologize
                     for stubbing my executioner's toes.

                     But only if I knew
                      the executioners
                                were mine only.

                What courtesy have I the right to give
                  to them who break the bones,
                                the souls of my brothers,
                                                    my sisters;

                          deny bread, books
                               to the hungry,
                          the children;
                                   medicine, healing
                                       to the sick;
                    roofs to the homeless;

                  who spoil the oceans,
                           lay waste the forests
                                   and the deserts,
                        violate the land?

                       Affability on the lips
                  of outrage
                      is a sin and blasphemy
                          I'll not be guilty of.

             © Rafael Jesús González 2017

5 comments:

  1. Thank you, Leon! Perfect for the occasion. I will share them with others and keep them with me as I march in DC next Saturday. Love, Estelle

    ReplyDelete
  2. Such an appropriate selection! It certainly helps the pain just a little, by philosophizing.
    We still need to get up, move and then run - for our own sake. Here is our chance to show how we are exceptional in our own way.
    Thanks for forwarding. Samar

    ReplyDelete
  3. Roses are red
    Violets are blue
    If people fight back
    This will pass, too.

    ReplyDelete
  4. wow , thank you so much for powerful words . i esp am moved by Gonzales's current poetry .. will bring it with me as i march in DC Saturday .... heartened by so many folks i know mobilizing (yet again) .. cheers , Jeanie

    ReplyDelete
  5. mary ann zeppetelloJanuary 18, 2017 at 6:08 AM

    Thanks Leon,

    I wake in the night out of a deep sleep and do not believe what I know to be true... * will be President....., never mine. Will be in Washington......probably the last for this 86 year old radical... taking the poems with me.

    ReplyDelete