— for Sawyer on his 18th birthday —
Your goodness is unquestionable,
conspicuously visible in your love
for dogs, music, and your eager
reflex to ease the terrane for people,
large or small, with challenges.
Any man who can hug
unabashedly those he cares
for is a man who can doubtless
heal divides. Your freedom
from absolutes inspires,
assessing people on their character
instead of the tick boxes checked
on census forms.
The world you’re inheriting
feels broken and confusing.
At 18, you’ve now been sanctioned
to sculpt it to your will; elect or reject.
In the mail today, a form arrived
from Selective Service. Battles
could suddenly move from pixelated
to corporal. People who will never
know you could force you into uniform
and a casket without thought,
for strategic or financial advantage
or on an emotional whim.
Do not let disgust or despair steal
your power and grind you to apathy.
Support or resist. Always express
your ideals and unquenchable thirst
for justice through your vote. You will steer
us right. You, with your big heart and open
eyes, with your digitally bridged world
and intolerance for hollow ritual,
will shed this confining design
we’ve so imperfectly hobbled together
and create something far kinder,
decent, and beautiful.
NaPoWriMo Day 14