One (1979)

A policy is still in place
Which subjugates each woman’s womb.
Spin doctors cannot render grace
When pregnancy begets a tomb.

Before the mother sees a face,
Her green is plucked in fetal bloom.
The thefts till now are hard to trace
When pregnancy begets a tomb.

Girl babies the males do displace
Since daughters leave home for their groom;
Thus, men enjoy an honored space
When pregnancy begets a tomb.

The girls who’ve died earth can’t replace,
And Truth’s cloaked in a red costume.
This program is the world’s disgrace
When pregnancy begets a tomb.

Such evil we need to erase,
Though shrouded in another room.
We all belong to the same race
When pregnancy begets a tomb.

The policy goes on apace—
Its destined death we can’t assume—
So battle all must now embrace
When pregnancy begets a tomb.


Virtue’s Slave

Today it’s so very hard to live right,
yet does this imply that we shouldn’t try?
We should slave for virtue with all our might.

Myriad temptations arrest our sight,
filling our hearts with lusts to gratify—
Today it’s so very hard to live right.

When the world’s blazing richness works to ignite
our angst, and we burn for joy wealth can buy,
we should slave for virtue with all our might.

Secular sermons entice us to fight
against ourselves, our sacred spark deny—
Today it’s so very hard to live right.

When our days are barraged by subdued spite,
and sorrows throng like clouds in a vicious sky,
we should slave for virtue with all our might.

In a murky world, we must all recite
a guiding mantra till the night we die:
“Today it’s so very hard to live right;
I must slave for virtue with all my might.”


The Last Column

Lines inspired by the 9/11 Memorial

A shaft of steel rises erect
its dappled surface all bedecked
small reminders for all who come
this was and is the last column.

After the soaring spires were wrecked,
into madness the heroes trekked.
Their sacrifice, a gruesome sum,
is blazoned on the last column,

a sight that sears us with respect,
a sight that prods us to reflect:
when terror dropped its wicked plumb,
most nobly stood the last column.

But chaos had an architect,
a hate that grows if left unchecked.
Still pounding on a martial drum
they vilify the last column.

These tyrants of a hateful sect
both liberty and life reject,
and lest to them our world succumb
we must arise, the last column.


Ron L. Hodges is a long-time English teacher, having taught at Oxford Academy in Cypress, California, for the past ten years. About a year ago he started writing poetry. He lives in Orange County, California with his wife and two sons.

Featured Image: “Magnificat”

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