Curtisj Johnson

True Values - Poem by Curtisj Johnson

True Values
By Curtis Johnson

I have seen America from sea to shining sea, but have never left its sandy shores. I’m older now, but when younger, I longed to see and light up the world. Now, I do not long to see, but have learned from where I sit, to point, click, and shine the light. If I never behold the seven wonders of the world, I’ll not be disappointed.

Wisconsin’s rolling hills in America’s dairy land; Great people of goodwill are there in a lovely place.
But if I had the choice and the means to buy the largest
Dairy farm and produce the finest cheese, would I do it?

Growing up, Chicago was a haven and place of refuge to start afresh and anew; a metropolis of golden opportunity; where many of us Southerners sought financial sanity.
But if I could pay for any high rise along the Magnificent Mile; a beauty which once I could only stare upon; if I could possess such treasure overlooking Lake Michigan, would I?

There’s a world class city of hills and pricey real estate;
For years, I drove peacefully across that Golden Gate.
But there were no roaming fears of shakes and quakes, nor did we complaint of the soothing fog horns. But if I could buy Twin Peaks or purchase Alcatraz Island and build a ‘to die for’ palace; Would I do it?

If I was the world’s richest man, my final answer would be ‘no’ to all the above and other places of unthinkable beauty. Nay. I would not be excited, impressed, or inspired by any ‘eye catchers’ of the world.

But I would be most inspired to live as a rich man where I once was born and raised as a poor boy. I would be continually enriched to inspire others who would observe the blessings of one, who once lived simply, labored hard in dusty cotton fields, and lingered long in the oven of the sun. I would be honored to tell the young ones about a senior citizen who once bailed hay, chopped and picked cotton, and pulled corn on hot and humid days that seemed to never end.

Yes. Were I a rich man, I would buy Hugh acres of land, produce marketable crops, and pay the highest wages. Were I a rich man, I would live and build among the poor and seek to transform a land that was once some of the richest soil on the planet into a community of the greatest value on the planet. It’s people would be enriched with a higher standard of living; but also with dignity, integrity, productivity, and goodwill.

Yes. Were I a rich man, I would return to live in the land of rich man, poor man. This land of my birth and early years, was the poorest state in the Union. If there was a middle class in my community, they were few. I think that I would want to live here in memory of my fore parents and all the poor but fine people I knew growing up. I would be honored to help enrich the lives of their descendants.

These would be so lavishly loved, respected, protected, and cared for.
These would be freed from the nightmarish stories of their forefathers. These would be compelled to pinch themselves, because for certain,
they would think that they were dreaming.Cj1021201

Topic(s) of this poem: care, poverty

Form: Narrative

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Poem Submitted: Friday, October 23, 2015

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