The Back Page

THE EARTH SURGEONS
By Eva Lyman, 1993

And here - hold on - another nip,
a dam, a tuck. Why hesitate?
We need the waters to flow south
that is their purpose, and our fate.

Climate you say? A drying trend?
Why, with this daring cut we can
put out the earth's own deadly thirst.
Poor nurse, why do you look so wan?

You fear the patient may not live?
Relax dear girl! In all my years
of surgery I have achieved
my goals, bar none! I want no tears!

From top to bottom in one move
we will transfer the water flow
and in the south we'll quickly make
the desert in green grasses glow.

The North? A wasteland? But, my dear,
who cares! To make the desert bloom
we'll cut and dam right here, and - oops!
(Perhaps a bit too much too soon?)

The surgery was successful, see?
A veritable work of art!
Our brilliance has no limits;
so what if - a minor detail-
The patient died!

 


 

THE UGLY AMERICAN
By F.H. Knelman, Ph.D.

The American Dream is dead
Killed by its country's head
Creating a world without care
With poverty, fear and despair

With robotic posture
And ignorant bluster
He threatens our future
And all without lustre

To disunite the nations
He takes steps unilateral
While many troops he stations
Whose deaths are mere collateral

He knows the Enron game
Yet he has no shame
The bully of the nuclear threat
And creating the greatest debt

By the dawn's early light
Investors come out to play
That was their dream all night
That's the American way

The attack on Iraq
Turned out to be flak
It's so easy to see
It's called SUV

In the land of the grave
And the home of the fee
What people crave
Is just to be free

The cars and hypes forever
Through the twilight's last gleaming
There's no end to Bush's scheming
Humanity's bond he does sever

There's no hope from above
When Bush comes to shove
With all his flags unfurled
He threatens the whole world

 


 

A Creed for Life

At a certain moment a doctor will determine that my brain has ceased to function and that, for all intents and purposes, my life has stopped.

When that happens, do not attempt to instill artificial life into my body with a machine.

Do not call this my "deathbed". Do call it my "Bed of Life" and let my body be taken from it to help others lead fuller lives.

Give my sight to a person who has never seen a sunrise, a baby's face or love in the eyes of another.

Give my heart to a person whose own heart has caused nothing but endless days of pain.

Give my blood to the teenager who has been pulled from the wreckage of his car, that he may live to see his grandchildren play.

Give my kidneys to one who depends on a machine to exist from week to week.

Take my bones, every muscle, every fiber and nerve in my body and find a way to make a crippled child walk.

Explore every corner of my brain. Take my cells, if necessary. Let them grow so that someday a speechless boy will shout at the crack of a bat and a deaf girl will hear the sound of rain against her window.

Burn what is left of me and scatter the ashes to the winds to help the flowers grow.

If you must bury something, let it be my faults, my weaknesses, and all prejudice against my fellow man.

Give my soul to God.

If, by chance, you wish to remember me, do it with a kind deed or word to someone who needs you.

If you do all I have asked, I will live forever.