Perhaps all our hearts are hardened,

Mine is wood, yours is stone.

Each a shackle heavy, locked and ransomed

As we stumble home.

We’ve each imprinted manifestos,

Bloodless clots within our chests.

By tattered knots we, with the best,

Have flesh and rubble sewn.

If all our hearts were hardened,

The thickest skin and coarsest sheath

Would tear with simple vulgar ease

For all the mercy shown.

And have you lead, and do you steal

That certitude that is impressed?

The only way you know to rest:

Like boulders that the wind has blown.

I know our hearts are hardened

And I know your lofty tone;

When we burden all these lifeless bricks

It’s like as not my own.

We found them in the quarry,

In the wreckage, in the mess,

With a flippancy we have confessed

And a coldness we condone.

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