Mortaljive: The Rest is Silence

There is no still point in all the Universe, and that is the rock upon which I stand

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Chuck and Bobby's Holy Grail

who gives witness to this tale
of chuck and bobby's holy grail
of young men lost behind the veil
think of them by and by

the face that stares out from the past
is running hard and running fast
the flags we fly should fly half-mast
for so much that has died

the face that is the soul of man
a face unwanted in this land
but some were strong and took a stand
while some birds never fly

upon the field the athletes say
'all bets are off when fairly played'
and boys to men play unafraid
this cannot be denied

a deeper wound cannot be made
it cuts us far beyond the grave
the one that haunts us to this day
our nation's greatest lie

we cannot change what was before
our lives are more than just a score
but in our hearts we can do more
we can spread our wings on high

tell us the story of these men
until at last it will sink in
stand for what's right, again, again
their souls are resting by
their souls are resting by


I read a feature in today's (December 6, 2009) Oregonian titled "Two tough Ducks in a Klan town" written by Herman L. Brame. I could not find the article in the online version of the paper. You can read a brief history about the two Oregon athletes I refer to in the words above (Robert S. Robinson and Charles A. Williams) here. I feel a heavy sorrow for how they were treated, and for them, but they were not alone--the book of our nation's racist past and present has many, many chapters.

If nothing else think for a time about the road that has brought us here, and think also of all those who have traveled its difficult route: from rich to poor, white and black and brown and yellow, men and women, young and old. On that great road of history, look up at those who walk towards you, and Seek not the mote in your enemy's eye but pluck the beam from your own.


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