the public good is an intellectual thing

                                                      i.m. Sister Pat DeMoully

Hobo, that disintegrating Henry
sank into Mississippi
bottomland.  Big Muddy.
Like Lucius with his wayward donkey

rescued (finally) by Isis-Psyche.
The mule wanders Badlands.
Civic twilight (all hands
off deck).  Some refusenik-refugee.

Henry recalls the Brown & Sharpe
machinery complex
where young Rex
mingled with VISTA volunteers, harp

tuned to Dionysian thunder drum.
Green genius JFK
chanted (head all bloody)
Camelot concept.  Whole sum

of common good (an intellectual thing)
for young collegians,
braving their joy-dance
from campus triangle to iron ring;

the commonwealth is worth defending
whatever happens to me
(beam, solidarity).
Like Sister Pat in Jonestown, bending

from Minneapolis to Mississippi’s
veritable excess poverty.
To be there, every day...
a live-oak Galahad, touching the keys.


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