The poem arose from a sense of frustration with the world and the increasing challenges to balance and survival. Activism can also be frustrating, as too often efforts seem fruitless. If you can't change the world, all that is left is to change yourself.
Joseph Farley edited Axe Factory from 1986 to 2010. His books and chapbooks include Suckers, For the Birds, Longing for the Mother Tongue, Waltz of the Meatballs, Her Eyes, and Crow of Night. His work has appeared recently in Danse Macabre, Concrete Meat Sheets, Thunder Sandwich, Horror Sleaze Trash, and other places.
In hard times leaders and saints are supposed to rise from among the people.
So far all I see is politicians and churchmen, bankers and generals
taking turns throttling the masses and pointing the finger.
It seems there is no place to look for salvation and guidance,
except to gaze inside ourselves, become a world in meditation,
each changing his or her own being and watching the ripples spread
out from the pebbles thrown into our small ponds.