I’m no prophet. No oracle who pokes around in something’s innards and boldly predicts the weather, the future, or the rise and fall of the stock market.
And I never could have foreseen the outward rippling effect of a poem I wrote in 1987. It has been used as a reading in churches all over the world. Last year, a brilliant young composer named Eric Lemmon set it to music.
At this moment, as I observe the clown car of presidential candidates, pouring out in their big, flappy shoes spouting hate, creationism, guns for everybody and other wacky-doo grade school notions, I think it might be time for the reappearance of this poem:
All this talk of saving souls,
Souls weren’t meant to save,
Like Sunday clothes that give out at the seams.
They’re made for wear; they come with lifetime guarantees.
Souls were made for hearing breaking hearts,
For puzzling dreams, remembering August flowers, forgetting hurts.
These men who talk of saving souls: They have the look of bullies
Who blow out candles before you sing Happy Birthday
And want the world to be in alphabetical order.
I will spend my soul, playing it out like sticky string into the world,
So I can catch every last thing I touch.