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Poetry to the Rescue of America's Soul


Poetry to the Rescue of America's Soul

César Chelala

As President Donald Trump’s (is this true or is it only a passingvnightmare?) wrecking machine continues its steady work of destroying
everything that is dear to Americans, two poets, Roque Dalton (1935-1975), a Salvadoran poet and Langston Hughes (1902-1967), a poet of the dispossessed, seem to have presaged Trump presidency’s characteristics and effects.

In his poem “Variations on a Phrase by Christ” Roque Dalton says,

“Give unto God that which is God’s

and to the government of the rich

that which belongs to the government of the rich.


Beautiful poetry. Thank you, Dr. César Chelala, for sharing these poems with us. If only more poets were thinking and writing on these ideas. That’s what it will take so that we/everyyone can turn away from the reigning ideology that of: ‘being nothing more than something they invest in.’ (To quote great another poet, Bob Dylan.)


Culture shapes mindset. It is the internal program which defines the direction we go and the limits of what we can create. A commodified, alienating, militarized, misogynist, money and violence worshiping corporate culture brought us to this moment and can create nothing different. Progressive poetry, the kind published in this article and in the Blue Collar Review, is a vital force that must be heard if our humane working class culture of solidarity is to take hold, take pride and lead us to take what is rightfully ours.


Lately the news seems filled with hate and tragedy;
Only occasionally does love and kindness appear.
Verily, we need a new strategy
Encouraging empathy and forgiveness instead of fear.

Teachers revered throughout history have always taught love,
Hatred is proved but a sordid blind alley.
Youth has always sought a path toward love in the light above.

Now we are facing a cult of hate and destruction,
Engorging itself upon power and greed.
It is time We the People begin giving instruction,
Growing love and compassion with new seed.
Hatred is like being chained to an oar in a galley.
Brotherly love can snap the chain and break the oar,
Or, take the galley and head for an halcyon shore
Resolving in peace, that of hate, we will take no more.

  • Steve Osborn
  • 28 May 2017
*  An acrostic solution.


Bravo, Steve. Well written, also true! A few words. Much wisdom!


Thank you kindly!


Democracy is coming to America…love it