It’s not fair that I get to attend a Destination Wedding
in some fair southern city adorned with white sandy beaches
and you must sit home at the daily drudge, 40 hour work week
closer to retirement, no extra cash at week’s end.
It’s not fair that the doctor told her softly on the phone this week
“You have lymphoma.”
It’s not fair that he sports two good knees, hiking endless miles,
while she sits at home, wheelchair-bound.
It’s not fair that wealthy yachters tip champagne glasses toward Bimini
and buy four mansions.
It’s not fair that he starves in Rwanda, thin bones against dirt,
rampaged by AIDS.
It’s not fair you live in a country where speaking opinion rots you in prison.
It’s not fair, is it, that your politician didn’t win, that you missed the
lottery, that it’s not snowing yet?
Or perhaps you think it’s not fair that it’s snowing sideways and
you must travel on icy road to that doctor who will or won’t tell you
what you do or don’t want to hear.
It’s not fair, you must agree, that she has all the talent, grows the best tomatoes, weighs 130 pounds.
It’s not fair that more readers visit his blog, that he sports one million hits, oh no, it’s not fair, while she writes wonderful posts with only twenty visitors a day.
Life is not fair.
The haves and have-nots dance around each other, an eternal dance,
a tug-of-war, a roller-coaster of ups and downs.
If you’re up you worry you’ll lose it.
If you’re down you fuss it can’t be found.
“Life’s not fair,” you whisper to your child, crying broken-hearted because
he lost the ballgame, the girl said no, he flunked his algebra quiz.
You want it to be fair.
We’ve all bemoaned fate, frowned, compared, featured inner temper tantrums insisting upon equality, more dessert, less pain, trips to Antarctica, how about that Declaration of Independence?
You want everyone to get an equal slice of the pie, the cake, the joy!
You want everyone to eat enough, sing enough, travel enough, dance enough, shine with exuberant health.
Oh how you want this!
It’s not fair, oh no, it’s not fair…
yet in your deepest heart you dream this impossible dream
and try to reach deeper to share your gifts, your talent, your luck,
your pocketbook–here’s twenty bucks, make that a hundred–
if only life would listen to your plea,
if only that hungry child in Brooklyn would please please please
quit crying right now.