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Sonnet for an Empty Wheelchair

By: Ardis E. Parshall - February 11, 2014

Sonnet for an Empty Wheelchair

By Nocella Young

Take down the pictures from the bedroom wall
And burn the scrapbooks. They have served their day,
Having proved the stricken body is not all,
And lay the childish storybooks away.
He learned to read, at least, who could not run,
And so roamed desert, sea, and colored places
And sent his mind to fly above the sun
And looked on ancient and historic faces.

Since there’s survival, he will look for one
No longer by the heavy body bound,
Who set the measure for the world he led.
Courage is courage, and a thing well done
Is worth a brother’s handclasp, whether found
In White House walls or on a farmhouse bed.

(1953)



2 Comments »

  1. Nice shout-out to FDR!

    Comment by Mark B. — February 11, 2014 @ 1:48 pm

  2. Oh! I totally missed that, Mark. Thanks. I didn’t quite know what to make of this poem on first reading.

    Comment by David Y. — February 11, 2014 @ 11:01 pm

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