Thurman P. Woodfork

WALKING THE WALK

IWVPA Club Recognition of Outstanding Non-War Related Writing: January 7, 2009
Awarded: January 7, 2009
“Be noble, and the nobleness that lies in
other men, sleeping but never dead, will rise
in majesty to meet thine own.”—J.R. Lowell

Something I learned a long time ago,
and passing years have confirmed it’s so:
You don’t always need to ‘walk the walk’
or make a big effort to ‘talk the talk’
in order to see and understand
how life is going for another man.

Unbiased eyes will help you discern
all that’s necessary for you to learn.
You only need a heart that’s good
and eyes that aren’t covered by a hood
of preconceived notions in order to find
what generally governs another man’s mind.

Basically, that’s all you need to do
without taking a step in another’s shoes
unless you’ve lived in a cloistered state
and don’t know a thing about love or hate.
Treat others as you’d have them treat you
is old advice that usually comes true.

It all boils down to where your heart lies;
I need not be Italian to read a Roman’s eyes.
But there’s always some pure son-of-a-bitch
you simply have to dump in a ditch.
This applies to kids and women as well;
some folks are just headed straight for hell.

All joking aside, Shakespeare said it best,
and his words have long stood the test:

“This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.”