A New Song
(a poem after Walt Whitman's, I Hear America Singing)
stinging songs, carols of perils, I hear,
the mechanics, blithe and wrong,
on selling me a valve job
maybe a pace maker. Or a car! Take her,
mason singing - soon to be a Shriner
convention denizen and a fat cigar, no trowel,
in the towel long ago. He'll go far.
Boatman, sing what belongs to you,
boat, you know it by rote,
make your payments on time.
Shoemaker, hatter, wood-cutter,
no more, their craft off-shored
roboticized, not a word, not a tune.
Mothers don't sing these days as they
another nanny, cancel a meeting
smoochie say, "I love you," by e-mail.
No plough boys anymore, they work
store now, check out the babes
their trade, singing their own songs.
singing what belongs to him or her and to none else,
TV, the game show, lottery, slots,
downsizing, uploading, digitizing songs - a buck a piece.
singing together, new songs for old,
songs, and still melodious,
perhaps even robust and friendly, I hear them.