Edwin Markham's 'Man With the Hoe' -- yesterday and today

July 07, 1992|By Robert E. Wolfe

BOWED by the weight of centuries he leans

2 Have now abandoned their vain search for work.

masters, lords and rulers in all lands,

How will the future reckon with this Man?

Today the poorest fifth of us earn less

Than one one-hundredth of the total wage.

But one percent of us own half the wealth,

And still, of all the nations of the world

DTC 9- We have no comprehensive health-care plan

How answer his brute question in that hour

When whirlwinds of rebellion shake all shores?

The helpless schools cannot begin to match

The dazzling lures awaiting on the street,

And so the jails fill up and spew back out

The hardened products of their wasteful years

:. To work more havoc in their neighborhoods.

How will it be with kingdoms and with kings --

With those who shaped him to the thing he is --

When this dumb Terror shall rise to judge the world,

After the silence of the centuries?

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