(Photo by Marlon Martinez. Image description: Ice blue mountains rise in the distance, over a blue lake. The water in the lake comes to almost where the feet of the onlooker would be. Stones are at the bank of the lake. Light spreads forward, upward.)

Heroes

We have a strange idea of thinking on the 

Lives of others

Only from the vantage point 

Of accomplishment 

Progress 

Or success 

We praise what they have done 

Lived for 

Their sacrifice on behalf of others 

We hear their struggle only from the 

Now

After things were

Changed 

Different

Because of them

We hear about the pain 

Yet through the lens of a more secure 

Position

At least by a small measure

We want someone else to

Stand in the fire 

To sit across from seemingly immovable mountains 

And to stare down tables of injustice 

To raise their voices and hands 

Their voice to quake the mountains 

Their hands to topple tables 

Unto freedom

We don’t want it to be us 

We want the end of the story 

The supposed already known outcome 

Then for us to be counted among them 

We look for heroes to step in

So we can then follow them 

But change 

Looks like multitudes standing and speaking 

And dissenting together 

A turning point 

Is only a point of turn 

If we all stand for change 

We must 

Actually do the work 

The public and unseen work of 

Progress 

Registering to vote

Writing the letter 

Lifting the phone 

Taking the bus

Picking up your keys 

Taking action

Going to the rally 

Wearing your mask

And so wear down the haunty stance of hate

With persevering 

Love 

Together 

All mountains will topple

Quaked to the ground  

With enough voices raised together

In a shout 

Yet every voice is needed

(Don’t give up. Courage looks like ordinary people standing for love, truth and light.)

Heroes: Now get to work 

And keep on working 

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