“what the dead know by heart”

“what the dead know by heart”

by Donte Collins

lately, when asked how are you, i 
respond with a name no longer living

➢ ➣ ➢

Rekia, Jamar, Sandra

➢ ➣ ➢

i am alive by luck at this point, i wonder
often: if the gun that will unmake me
is yet made, what white birth

➢ ➣ ➢

will bury me, how many bullets, like a 
flock of blue jays, will come carry my black
to its final bed, which photo will be used

➢ ➣ ➢

to water down my blood, today i did 
not die and there is no god or law to
thank. the bullet missed my head

➢ ➣ ➢

and landed in another. today, i passed
a mirror and did not see a body, instead
a suggestion, a debate, a blank

➢ ➣ ➢

post-it note there looking back. i
haven’t enough room to both rage and 
weep. i go to cry and each tear turns
to steam. I say

➢ ➣ ➢

I matter and a ghost
white hand appears
over my mouth

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Fate

Fate

by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Deep in the man sits fast his fate
To mould his fortunes, mean or great:
Unknown to Cromwell as to me
Was Cromwell’s measure or degree;
Unknown to him as to his horse,
If he than his groom be better or worse.
He works, plots, fights, in rude affairs,
With squires, lords, kings, his craft compares,
Till late he learned, through doubt and fear,
Broad England harbored not his peer:
Obeying time, the last to own
The Genius from its cloudy throne.
For the prevision is allied
Unto the thing so signified;
Or say, the foresight that awaits
Is the same Genius that creates.

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A Psalm Of Life

A Psalm Of Life

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Dust thou art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Find us farther than to-day.

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act,— act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o’erhead!

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.

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