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.