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“I have three treasures
  That I value and protect
  The first is compassion
  The second is economy
  The third is daring to not be ahead in the world.”
    ~ Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, chapter 67

Oftentimes my eyes get watery,
     My nose gets too much runny,
         Then my mind picks up their message;
             I won’t call it sad or funny.

Seems I’m crying for my country;
     Seems it’s all torn through by curses,
         And although they’re not my own work
             I might catch them in these verses:

May your business be too burdensome,
     Your workmanship too weak,
         And your customers convenienced
             Till they can’t read, write or speak.

May your ads be too effective,
     Your programming too addictive,
         And your culture too complacent,
             Creepy, cruel, vain & vindictive.

May your girls be much too hefty,
     While your models are too thin,
         And your women far too special
             To be married to their men.

May your youth be soon embittered,
     Your adults as soon embattled,
         And your elders shunned
             Except by creditors who’ve got them saddled.

May your families be broken
     By their conflicts and defeats;
         May your children be annoying,
             Set aside, made sick with sweets.

May your leaders face tough questions
     For connivings and deceits;
         May your homeless sit on buses
             Bound for someone else’s streets.

May your foes be dedicated wacks,
     Your allies idiotic,
         And your friends
             A crowd of jerks and sharks who pass for patriotic.

May your ways be bureaucratic
     And your products all defective;
         May your people be competitors,
             Not kindly or reflective.

May these curses be well captured
     So the reader has recoiled:
         Then my art has taken one small step
             To see that they’re all foiled.

When we do the world’s policing
     We attract its boundless ire;
         May our can-do spirit’s ceasing
             Mean our borders, not our pyre.

    October 2016

Thanks always returns

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