May Sarton

(1912-1995 / Belgium)

Who Wakes? - Poem by May Sarton

Who wakes now who lay blind with sleep?
Who starts bright-eyed with anger from his bed?
I do. I, the plain citizen. I cannot sleep.
I hold the torturing fire in my head.
I, an American, call the dead Negro’s name,
And in the hot dark of the city night
I walk the streets alone and sweat with shame.
Too late to rise, to raise the dead too late.
This is the harvest. The seeds sown long ago -
The careless word, sly thought, excusing glance.
I reap now everything I let pass, let go.
This is the harvest of my own indifference.
I, the plain citizen, have grown disorder
In my own world. It is not what I meant.
But dreams and images are potent and can murder.
I stand accused of them. I am not innocent.
Can I now plant imagination, honesty,
And love, where violence and terror were unbound -
The images of hope, the dream’s responsibility?
Those who died here were murdered in my mind.

Comments about Who Wakes? by May Sarton

There is no comment submitted by members..

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Poem Submitted: Friday, April 9, 2010

[Hata Bildir]