October, 2009

Poetry

Green Shoots

Sprout Illustration

By Jim Prevor


I
Who knew economists could be so poetic?

Think of the imagery... brown sod,
once laid green in a more hopeful era.

Then laid low by tough times.

Now, though, the unrelenting expanse
of brown and broken is interrupted.

New growth forces its way through
the detritus of the past.


II
They say a stopped clock is still right twice a day.

I wonder if those economists really see the green shoots?

Or do they just know that is the way to bet?


III
This is America after all.

“Remember, my son,”
Said old J.P.’s dad,

“Any man
who is a Bear
on the future
of this country
will go broke.”


IV
We are always speaking
About the past
And don’t even know it.

Mighty Wal-Mart, invincible and strong.

Like Sears,
F.W. Woolworth,
The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company...

All gone or mere shadows.
But in their day,
They seemed like the pyramids —
Certain to stand
Forever.


V
In America,
What lives forever
Is the people.

Gathered from every corner of the globe.
They are always struggling
Against the detritus of the past —
Keeping shop, haggling with suppliers,
serving their kinsmen.
And they are always breaking through.

Green shoots.