An Apology

Please excuse me in taking a new direction entirely. It’s not that I consider myself a muse or a poet. Just that I have some things to say at this stage of my life and my country, albeit in my small voice and limited literary skills.

Apology

I’m here to apologize

For 1963

To the days

Of that year

Every single day

Sorry it’s taken so long

I’ve been away

Elsewhere

Distracted

Something was happening

In 1963

But I wasn’t there

I apologize to Martin Luther King

He had a dream

I didn’t really know about it

Or if I did

I wasn’t paying attention

I apologize to Bob Dylan

And Joan Baez

They told it in song

“Like a Rolling Stone”

I was into the Beach Boys

I’m here to apologize

To a whole bunch of people

Maybe nobody told me

Something was happening

Something important

Maybe they told me

But I wasn’t listening

It didn’t sink in

Not like the beer

And the parties

At the Sigma Chi House

Or the girl in my Chemistry Class

Not like the courses

The grades

That might assure me

Safety above the fray

The fray of what was happening

What was more important

What was changing America

I came here to apologize

It was all on TV

Radio

It was all in the papers

Can’t blame it on my friends

My parents

Professors

Can’t exactly

Find a good excuse

I wasn’t blind

Or Deaf

While people were protesting

Brothers were dying

In Vietnamese forests

And Negro towns

And someone was

Killing the President

I was somewhere else

Oh, you say let go of it

Don’t fret yourself

Forget about it

It’s in the past

You’re not alone

Just look out for yourself

That’s the real America

Anyway

They didn’t really

Make much of a difference

You can’t change America

You say

But I wasn’t there

What could have happened

If I had been there?

If all of us had been there

I came here to apologize

 

And there are some other years

I need to apologize for

1964, 1967, 1974

And some others too

Actually

A lot of them

Maybe all of them

5/3/20

2 thoughts on “An Apology

  1. Beverly B. Hill says:

    Wonderful, Dale! So many of us share in that reproach. We were so busy getting jobs and training for careers that we ignored injustices that hid in plain sight. Now we have to make the children of those people whole. African-Americans have been robbed of the ability to accumulate wealth since the day Reconstruction ended, as Ira Katznelson and Richard Rothstein made clear. What do we do now? Reparations? For Native Americans, too?

    Like

    • Thank, Bev. I’m departing economic blogs a bit to allow some sarcasm to see whether that ends up with more impact. Please excuse some of the language! Hope you’re all continuing safe, especially the Doctor who is probably still working at the hospital.

      Like

Leave a Reply to Beverly B. Hill Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s