O Country! My Country!
(a modern verse inspired by the Walt Whitman classic, "O Captain! My Captain!")
O Country! my Country! April, May have had their run,
The restless nights are in the past, the elections are long done,
A new government, fresh promises, old frenemies are all smiles,
Whatsapp / Facebook now Tweet laughter - less fraudulent and facile;
But O heart! heart! heart!
O the numb locks of dread,
Where on the streets my People lie,
Forgotten, sick, and dead.
O People! my People! stand up to every test -
In your faith my Country lies, in your fulsome love she rests,
For you the flag, the song, the blood, for you the sloganeering,
For you the potholed roads, footpaths, for you the constant fearing;
Hear, Conscience! dear soul, ghost!
Withered, full of lead,
It cannot be that on this morn
You're forgotten, sick, and dead.
My Conscience does not answer, she lies cold and still,
My People do not feel my angst, they chew a bitter pill,
My Country still seems safe and true, her borders proud and long,
Inside a thousand forces fight, a billion voices strong;
Ball your fists, clench your gut,
But I with hopeful tread,
Walk the white where my Country lies,
'tween the green and red.