A Poem

Hello Everyone–Sharing a recent poem of mine–I hope it speaks to you.–Shirley


 I thought I knew the world

that I would always embrace my sons, my girls, my family, my friends

without invisible barriers—freely, with love.

I thought I knew my country

our leaders who spoke from above us

only to help us rise to meet them, to soar.

I thought I knew the people,

the white, black, the yellow, the red

and every shade in between

as we locked arms, no one pulling ahead,

but pushing forth together.

I thought I knew the promise

the one my parents received as they stepped upon the shores

where I would have my birth,

as they gazed upon the torch, a little chipped now,

a little grayer after the storms.

I thought I knew our leaders

who would always do what was right,

trust in the science and not the money

trust in the worth of every man instead,

every woman, every child.

Yes, I thought that eventually we would all do the right thing.

I still think it.



Shirley Russak Wachtel

September 27, 2020 (Erev Yom Kippur)