An attempt to respond to more murder, more injust, more misery. With something other than a thrown verbal rock.

If you read it at all, read it slowly.  For Tamir, even in the last few weeks, you could substitute the names of maybe a dozen others:  many of them, like Tamir, children.


Lament for Darren Wilson and Tamir Rice

(Thanksgiving, 2014)

Precious, precious, precious.
The lives of killers are precious;
they are prisms of truth.
The lives of killers are as those sacred books
we ignore at our peril. And when we read,
woe to those who indifferent read,
or live athwart the words.
Killers, listeners, I said killers.
The lives of killers are precious
whatever you think you have heard
about the image of God,
our murderous imperfections,
or that voice saying in Hebrew
Ehyeh asher ehyeh.
They are because they are.
They are as all lives are
precious, sanctus, precious,
the lives of killers –
and the lives ended,
oh listeners in whom they must live.
Precious the armored humans.
Precious the shaking children,
as ashes in wavering ranks, precious,
from smokestacks once ascended.