The Quest

Atlanta born there was a man
 who in his youth had known the wrongs
 of racial hate-- and thus began
 the quest where living love belongs.
Of brotherhood he dared to dream:
 so, peaceful action was the way.
Amid sin's torrent truth would stream:
 by words and courage, hearts he'd sway.
     With Truth in triumph, Glory bound:
     our brother gone, our Freedom found.

A shadow then was o'er our land
  as an entitlement unpaid.
There came a time to take a stand:
  true justice must not be delayed.
This man knew well what was at stake:
  the righteous whirlwinds of revolt
  would make our land's foundations shake,
  as Selma was a thunderbolt.
     With Truth in triumph, Glory bound:
     our brother gone, our Freedom found.

There is a spirit of decay
  which vies within the human heart.
In early April came a day
  when that wrong spirit did impart
  an act for which all words do fail.
That early April brought a deed
  which for all time did lift the veil
  of where a valiant life may lead.
     With Truth in triumph, Glory bound:
     our brother gone, our Freedom found.
                                                                           

                                                                                ‚Äč-Dale K. Mensing






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"The right to be let alone is the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men." -- Louis Brandeis

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          An American Odyssey


Amid the struggles of mankind
there came a task, and freedom shined
on those on whom chains were consigned.
How came the leader the way to find?
What made him the Emancipator?
What brought him to that door?
       'Twas the pathway that he trod
       from the cabin to the sod.


Of melancholy journey born,
whom of glory found and lost
 knew the battle and the cost.
What made him the Emancipator--
 mid-west small town railsplitter?
What brought him to that door?
      'Twas the pathway that he trod
      from the cabin to the sod.


Mid-west bound there was a train--
the course of sorrow rolling.
In a car his casket has lain
as mournful din (the bell) was tolling!
And, this which Providence doth send:
'tis a wound time shall not mend.
What brought him then to such an end?
       'Twas the pathway that he trod
       from the cabin to the sod.

                                                --Dale K. Mensing