Removing his slippers
He stepped barefooted onto the smooth pebbles.
Moving slowly, he stooped occasionally,
Careful to collect every fallen, red maple leaf –
Then, using the bamboo rake
He carefully made the patterns she’d loved.
Sitting on a low wooden bench
He now drank his tea and remembered.
His black skin held tight
The red blood that pumped life,
Until she cut him.
Her pale complexion
Always hid the red blood,
Until she was shamed.
Her ancient ancestry
Stayed in her red blood,
Until the city stole her innocence.
Kneeling in prayer
Red blood sang through his body,
Until hatred ended his life.
Our naked desires
Our blood red insides
Our loves and fears
The vessel matters not
The souls are all alike.
The heart pumps the same -
Be mindful where your bare feet fall,
Fear not the proclaimed poppy tall,
Listen not to any demon's call,
Try not to drop the fragile ball.
Treat others with a heart that's kind,
Remember it's your own free mind,
Don't be strayed, nor unforgivingly blind,
Leave not your conscience far behind.
Stand strong and mighty as the elm,
Ever mindful that you have the helm,
Try not to be too overwhelmed,
Many hands will help you in this realm.
Tread ever lightly in our plane,
Push not against this earthly grain,
Cause not you heart unpleasant strain,
And upon your path you shall remain.