The Web Poetry Corner - Philip Claude Andermann - To Transform Intolerance
To Transform Intolerance
Philip Claude Andermann
Good cannot exist without evil.
We won’t see the light without the shadow.
We must brave the thorns for the roses.
Beauty has created ugliness.
Men have fought vast wars over the beauty of women or the love of God.
Priceless lives are lost [though the Homeric poems transfixed me as an 8-year-old]
and God remains invisible, seemingly lost.
Life is made truly beautiful only by self-mastery.
"You have made me want to be a better man."
the Prometheus in us would never have risked torture
to steal the fire of stars
that others might warm themselves.
Without a night,
we would never have seen the stars out there,
realized the vastness of the universe,
and thought that maybe
that same vastness existed within each of us.
To create great good we had to conquer
Ugliness and weakness
Within our selves.
But how can we tolerate those who are intolerant?
We cannot passively acquiesce,
and we cannot descend to their intolerance.
There is a way to elevate them
by most warmly mercifully putting them to shame
for them to seek out a new way
to be proud of.
We can meet them as friends even if they do not meet our expectations.
Then as such there are always things we can learn from them,
in the respectful process
inspiring in them new self-expectations.
Giving themselves a vibrantly contributive job.
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