“unity assists”
“unity assists”

“unity assists”

a city of immigrants, veterans and


sitting quietly on the bank of

the ohio,

in ohio,

with gridded streets and hills on guard –

first step to freedom or work

and the promises of new life

for those who came


the farms –

ravaged by war, then floods,

and dry taps

in the ’20s –


with a flag screaming,

“unity assists!’

and icons of commerce, wisdom, justice

& water –

the city, today,

booms with commerce

led by those

with entrepreneurial hearts;


led by those unafraid of bigotry & fear;


led by those with courage to do what is


in the face of misinformation and

reactionary ideologies –

the city is no longer quiet –

the city screams, as it did in the past,

“unity assists!”

screams for its neighbors to get what they deserve;

screams for progress to build its reach;

screams for the room to be what it can –

the city was once called a “queen” by a poet

much more esteemed

than me,

just a casual visitor along its sleepy bank –

i visited and stayed and call this city

“home” –

‘and this street called vine –

this city of mine –

the business & the progress shall deliver –

to the queen of the west –

in her future dressed –

on the banks of the beautiful river’ –

with apologies to longfellow –

and love to those who bellow –

for those who feel we missed,

our calling of

“unity assists” –

it is for you who the veterans fought

for you why the immigrants sought

brighter shores

and for you who the abolitionists taught,

jeopardizing their lives at lane seminary

to do what’s right –

there is a history here on this noisy bank,

a history and a guide

showing us

the traditions of who we are and what we are called

to be –

uncover your ears!

open your eyes!

it’s here!  it’s time!  it’s now!

we, too, will be remembered –

not for what we thought, but for what we did

& who we were –

i want to be remembered for





“unity assists”