For my Uncle George

There are dreamers
who mount the box
to speak the words
        that people need,
       to give them
strength of heart
        to do great deeds,
   and make the world anew.

There are dreamers
      too of a different
the kind who place
   brick on brick,
who fix their minds
         on concrete things,
     on details and dreary          
facts, who
             cast the soaring words
but give us now a glimpse
      of what the future hides,

a vision
    and a poetry
      of better lives,
wrenched from a world
         gone mad.

Fate bound us together,  
      for I was born on your
     own day, and though
a childhood ago,
            much for me remains.

Those rodeo's will ride
forever in my memory of you
      ...the seders which drew together
millenia of time and tradition
       ...and your special gift
      and conviction,
       that reason,
 a relentless quality of mind,
could lead us through
  this pass
     to a gentler time.

Your passion burned
with quiet indignation,
    for fifty years
      kept true to this
              simple position:
that dignity belongs
to all, not a few.

My uncle,
            who built what
          others only dreamed,
how proud we are of you,
         to have shown us,
 brick on brick,
the way to that
           better world which
     still waits
      to be wrought
                              and born.

December 1988


All written material © Bill Schechter, 2016
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