Weapons of choice

In childhood he was quiet and thoughtful.

When other boys donned cowboy hats and wielded plastic guns

He sat, sketchbook in hand, and drew from his pocket

His weapon of choice, his pencil.

Inside his head, he imagined a world

where violence was confined to comic books

and movies.

When he grew up he joined in debates

with friends around the table.

While red wine flowed and cigarettes were smoked

He thanked God for France and  freedom of speech.

He withdrew his weapon of choice

and doodled on the tablecloth

and drank more wine –

Then slept the peaceful sleep of those

whose only weapon is a pencil.

When angry men came to his work

and shouts and shots rang out

he stood and faced them

his weapon of choice

in his hand. his pencil.

Je suis Charlie.


The Orbs in a Photograph.

The children playing near the tree

Cannot be seen by you or me

But when you cry they wipe your tear

to let you know that they are near.

When you play and laugh and run

they join in, loving all the fun

They trace the smile upon your face

Then kiss your cheek and join the race.

They know your sadness never leaves

and give treasures as they pass.

They’re the feathers on your carpet,

The orbs in a photograph.