Guest Poet Clarence Thompson

Wheat and Tares

Up and down the streets of our town
the light of the beautiful people shines 
on us from billboards and newsstands 
and big screen TV's.

While the righteous are seeds 
sown in the cracks of the dirty sidewalks,
pushing their roots into the honest soil
As the seeds sprout, the cracks widen.

How much would it cost to choose between
a fake flower in acrylic admired on a shelf, 
or a seed sacrificing its perfect shape
to bless the ground?

February, 1999

Clarence Thompson's Questions:

1. Is the meaning of the poem clear?

2. Does the third stanza continue to develop the idea set forth in the first two stanzas?

3. Is there a more powerful or compact way to say what I've said?  A better image?

Thanks very much!

Correspond with Clarence Thompson at
with your ideas about this poem.

The Albany Poetry Workshop