Made in America

At 6 in the morning I open my eyes

Struggle out of bed and thank God I’m alive

I think about the dream that I just can’t shake

and wonder if the work I do is worth all the hate

I remember the time not so long ago

When we valued education, all states, all tribes

Building monuments to knowledge, teaching all how to read

Basic education was the start of the seed

War engines paved the way for many people to rise

Learn to build and lead teams to keep their dreams alive

Progress came with a cost, like all good things

We lost some to madness, others to pain

Pushing future forward we continued to lean

Moving into space, finding new ways to glean

Reaching higher and farther, faster and harder

“No limits” became our feverish mantra

until we lost our damn minds in the pursuit of our truth and understanding

See, I am something new, born into the mix

of a world too lazy to stop and think 

Instant satisfaction is the name of the game

No time for innovation, no hope to inflame

I hear people talk about how to move ahead

Submit plans for fixing the broken axles of our minds

The revolving door of gap stops and bandaids

Grind on squeaky, rusted wheels…

Stuck in a rotation of work-eat-play

We grow fat, burn bridges and have the nerve to complain

When absent from the work of living we forfeit

The voice within us all made to bless and serve

Those who dare to fight for knowledge and truth

Are cast as villains, steered away from their calling

“You can’t make a living as a teacher” they say.

“Do you want to be poor until your dying day?”

The victims of our of inaction aren’t hard to find

Look to the blank expressions and sunken eyes

Of the children standing neatly in the school bus line

Marching to the rhythm we manufactured

Made in America

~ Marta C. Youngblood

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