my book of poetry about September 11th, 2001...and after Available NOW at -click here

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Today...October 18th, 2015

Sunday, after getting back from a visit to Jen in North Carolina and doing a double at the DOB. Our neighbors, Danya and Andrew are getting married today. I hear them in the hall. A lovely couple just starting out! Like Jen-Scott and me, almost exactly 13 years ago!

 I wrote something at work the other night…It is a speech I imagine myself giving to a room full of inspectors-in-training as I face them for the first time since news broke that my chief, of my very unit, resigned in disgrace.

“I enjoy performing for the people of this city. What I perform is my duty. It is truly sad when someone believes they are above the law. It plays out time and time again. It is especially sad when it is someone so young and talented. It's an indication that he perhaps rose too high too quickly. Service is the most powerful gift one human being can give to another. It is not a submissive act, but the most dominate force known in this world. There are those who think that everyone has a “price.” I call bullshit on that one. When you begin to sully yourself as a person with that type of thinking, when you begin to put a price upon that which is priceless, you lose your way. I will perform for you today and when I leave this room, we owe each other nothing. Nothing except the understanding and a trust that I would never expect anyone to compromise integrity for my gain. Anyone who asks that of you is not your friend.

I am a bricklayer by trade…” (The following I added this peaceful Sunday morning)

As such, I learned the value in meticulous repetition. The choreographed movement of tools and materials that spread mortar and place brick one after another so that from a pile of raw clay and sand, a structure begins to emerge in a place where there once was none. So too does one day of labor follow another so that with careful husbandry and the passing of time I have built for myself a life. I came into this world under very humble circumstances. I have stumbled and fallen more than a few times. I have learned that life is very much like a building. You must have a strong foundation, one that is unyielding and will not shift or settle with the loads imposed. This is the very root of integrity. Firm belief in the basic principles of a just society. Even though there is injustice, only order can defeat chaos. My core belief is that even the smallest, most unrecognized actions I take to paddle against a tide of misery are worthwhile.

I have had my chances for fame and fortune…I may have not been properly prepared for those opportunities at the time, so I did not enjoy the trappings of an early success. I am grateful for that in a way. Grateful because I have slowly come to learn the true value of life. The true power of each individual soul and how it is we who must decide what is important to us. What’s important to me is that the vile demons of our natures not overpower the good. I am where I am, I do what I do, and I make what I make.

Now let’s go to work. These homes, these churches, these places of business will not build themselves…