I ran across this poem today while reading an article in English Journal about the Toulmin model of argumentation. What a serendipity.
Even as we watched from my writing class
a man kick the trashcan in front of school,
yelling I will not eat your fucking garbage,
my students had the decency not to laugh,
but to settle into their desks to write.
One student, a Hindu girl, asked to be
excused, and we watched her at the curb
give the man her sack lunch. I remember
thinking at the time, that we can begin
and end each day with even: even
as the sun crests the eastern edge of
the ridge, a peregrine swoops from
the gargoyle on the Commerce building
and takes a pigeon from the street; even
as the sun melts the horizon like an egg
yoke, the old woman pushes her rubble
from 8th Avenue into the alley full
of dumpsters, and one has to admire
how sweetly she cares for the faded baby-
doll in the child sear of her grocery cart.
English Journal July 2010
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