Can we form a friendship with a foe?
Can we step deeper into this mire
of muddy land we share
even after we pushed natives aside
to colonize a fresh and foreign land?
Can we acknowledge those we enslaved
to do our work, those with darkest skin
from far off Africa? Can we dare
to find the light between us,
is there a way to erase the injury,
damage we deal to others
unlike ourselves? Can we confess,
bringing to the surface our gravest crimes?
Can we hone a strong alliance,
blending our breaths into one, creating
a new humanity for each other?
2016 poem by Marilyn Peretti