Fear Not

I am reprinting a poem from January 2011. See you next week!

No Worries Today

I am grown,
I have listened, I have faced terrors with calm
and boldness.

And yet I fear this day.
I fear that I may offend,
or make some see me as ‘Less Than,’
or worse, see them or others as

When I speak on this, am
I partisan?
Or political, or selfish or
in community?

I remember words of Hubert at a
Dining table in Louisville.
He never ate,
But regaled us with stories
of compromise and movement
and progress.
Even in defeat, he seemed to love
both sides of the aisle.
He loved us that day.
His eyes shone–
No force, no retreat,
But looking to the future,
our future.
Progress would come in this
Civil discourse,
this post-schism place.
And I remember Timmy,
seeking the decisions for
the People–
Pumping the hands,
Hugging the shoulders,
Smiling the bright ruddy smiles,
Battling the cause by day,
and seeing the people as human–frail and good,
failing and succeeding–
on both sides of the chambers at night.

And as I seek what is right,
As I fear whom I might offend
or whom I might pierce and
push away,
I remember John speaking to God:
You are mine and I am
So Be It!
Let me be employed for you
Laid aside for you.
And may we be together.
Set aside my fears this day!

I was uncomfortable as I copied this poem into the blog today, because I played around with Wesley’s Covenant Prayer–a prayer that has changed my life as I say it daily. Ultimately, I decided to keep this poem as I wrote it originally. Perhaps even Wesley altered his prayer sometimes.

Hubert is Hubert Humphrey, who I met at a convention in 1973. I was lucky to be seated randomly at the same luncheon table with him. But Hubert never ate anything that day. He talked about history non-stop. I was struck then by the fact that he loved politicians on both sides of the aisle, despite his marvelous passion. His love and tolerance still impress me–maybe more so today.


“Timmy” was my mentor in politics, and he too worked with both sides of the aisle. He respects people–as people–and that is important now, as it was then.

It is sometimes hard for me to set aside my passions to respect both sides of an issue. But I have found moments where that civility has helped to solve an issue, and to help people.


About Tom Bolton

I'm a Husband and Dad, an Enterprise Systems Manager at the City of Milwaukee, and a Disciple and Lay Servant at First United Methodist of West Allis. I love working beside young people. As I study the Bible, sometimes I feel moved to work through my understanding by writing poetry. I also am going through a process to discern my calling, and to learn more about Christian Leadership. Sometimes I just feel like writing about something that grabs my attention too.
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One Response to Fear Not

  1. Hello Tom! I agree with the premise of your argument. Politicians need to put their differences and egos aside and do what is best for the country.

    Thanks so much for sharing God blesses.

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