Alice WThe great American novelist and poet Alice Walker was in town the last two days, and I was fortunate enough to be in attendance at her public event last night at the Morton Theatre. It was a conversation with a great and generous soul, who reminded us to be kind, generous, curious and grateful to the wonder of which we are all a part, and to which we are ever-present witnesses. She instructed us to read, read, read, and to be aware of all that we allow into our consciousness via the invasive nature of electronic and broadcast media. We should be mindful of our ancestors and their suffering, because of which we should work to alleviate all suffering that we are aware of and encounter. Truly amazing and inspiring. She even read a couple of pages of dialogue between Shug and Celie talking about God from The Color Purple. I hope your Thursday night was good, too.

But here, I’ll share a poem from her website [yes, she blogs]. This is The Future Captured in A Heartless Fist by Alice Walker:

Somehow it is left to us

This most hopeful of generations

To bear

The unbearable.

We do not need to have given birth

To the children

Who are being destroyed

To know they are our children

Not only in the present and the past

But certainly in the future.

All children are connected at birth

To all the others ever to arrive.

Their faces turned upward

Toward the parents all grown-ups were meant to be.

How can you separate your child

From mine?

Little one, they have captured you

And placed you in a cage.

What are we to make of this?

Are we supposed to see you

As an animal?

Though animals also do not deserve

This fate.

Are we supposed to think

That you are, at five years old,

Already a “terrorist”?

Are we to believe you deserve

To stand alone in this tiny jail

Obviously constructed with you in mind

While grownups stand around

And frighten you?

Who paid for this cage


Whose taxes?

Whose labor?

Whose sweat?

Little One,

You are Palestinian

You are also Earthling,

You are Every Child.

By most humans of this planet

You are beloved.

But in this moment,

So hard to own

As what any parent or grownup


Could desire or wish

You are The Future

Captured in a heartless


Image from last night, stolen without permission from fB.