Listen

Listen
Do you hear them?
The church bells
Ringing across small town America

Listen closely
As they play the happy sad chorus to which we’ve all become accustomed.

I sit and listen as the carillon plays…
A sound I’ve heard for many years now
Only blocks from my home.
A sound that used to make me smile,
Used to bring me comfort
Used to fill me with hope.

But now the familiar tunes fill me with sadness,
Fill me with doubt,
And on occasion… fill me with anger.

For on this and many other Sunday mornings,
As the processionals continue
As the hymnals come out
As the voices are lifted to the heavens…

Mothers are burying sons taken from them through senseless brutality
Husbands are burying wives stolen by a virus some still believe to be a hoax
Men and women are cast aside because of who they love or how they love
Children leave home with friends never to return
Homeless starve while the wealthy feast

The red calls out the blue
And the blue calls out the red
And the black and brown still suffer

Listen closely to those bells my friends

What are they saying to YOU?
Are they calling you to act?
Are they calling you to pray?
Are they calling you to do nothing but turn a blind eye and a cold heart?

While I may not be sitting in a pew,
Those bells speak to me too…

They beg me to open my eyes wider
To love my fellow women and men, no matter their skin color
To never blindly follow a person or a religion or a political party
To cast aside societal norms and use the brain
AND the heart I’ve been given
To do right by others… ALL others…
Not just the ones who look like me,
Talk like me,
Think like me

We must do better my sisters and brothers…

The church bells are telling us to…

Tori Burris Inkley
6/21/20

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