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Mr. Gates, Help Me Open Windows

Exposing the real crime in Cambridge (and elsewhere); PLUS, The Heat is On

by Greg Asimakoupoulos
July 31, 2009

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Mr. Gates, Help Me Open Windows

Mr. Gates, Help Me Open Windows
Exposing the real crime in Cambridge (and elsewhere)

Yes, he tried to open windows,
but that proved a big mistake.
You'd think that not a problem
for a man whose name is Gates.

What happened back in Cambridge
near that town best known for tea
was an operating system
that could not be called PC.

It exposed the unveiled vista
we pretend does not exist
of a nation where black people
top the "can't be trusted" list.

What if after your vacation
you returned home without keys
and you tried the doors and windows
while your neighbors called police?

Wouldn't you be pretty angry
and the source of endless grief
if they branded you a burglar
and then cuffed you as a thief?

Would the same thing Gates encountered
have occurred to one less tan?
I would bet a different outcome
for a paler key-less man.

Sad to say the door marked EQUAL
still remains most often locked.
It is time we force it open. 
The real crime is simply talk.

* Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is the black Harvard professor who was arrested after entering his own home without a key when a neighbor called authorities assuming it was a break-in.
 
* The above poem has been updated since it was originally published. In the original post I implied that the neighbor who called the police on Mr. Gates knew the "alleged intruder" was black. Subsequent to posting the poem I read a transcript of the 911 call that indicated the neighbor did not know the skin color of the person.
 

The Heat is On
Sounding off about Seattle's Heat Wave

I don't know 'bout global warming.
I just know I cannot sleep.
It's an oven in my bedroom,
much too hot for counting sheep.

Though they call this season summer,
I think simmer's more correct.
Since we have no air conditioning,
I'm a sleepless nervous wreck.
 
Yesterday we broke a record
1-0-3 humid degrees.
In Seattle that's unheard of.
It is known for seventies.
 
But perhaps God sent this heat wave
to convert our pagan state.
When the temperature's like Hades,
some might move t'ward Heaven's gate.

Comments (2)


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Jordan Jennings from Chicago, IL writes:
August 1, 2009
I think you would do well to reconsider this highly complicated situation and retract some of your statements, just as the president had to do after he cast judgement prematurely. The reports are conflicting and it is difficult to say what actually took place. In the end, I do not find this particular poem very well thought out and I think it pretty clearly judges people in absense of much needed details and clarification. We should always be careful that we do not accidentally throw innocent bystanders under the bus in our effort to preach a social message, however noble. Don't succumb to making examples out of people you don't well enough just because it fits the meter of the poem.




Betty Sanderson from Arizona writes:
August 1, 2009
I think your remark is as racist as Obama's. Calling people not bright because they are concerned over a neighbor's home when they see two men supposedly breaking in. Maybe you live in an elite neighborhood but many people are not that fortunate and crime is a real problem in America. I would hope my neighbors would do the same for me. I think you need to apologize for this poem.

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PO BOOKS BY GREG ASIMAKOUPOULOS
Sunday Rhymes & Reasons
Published June 4, 2009

Sunday Rhymes and Reasons is a compilation of inspirational poetry by America's pastor/poet laureate, Greg Asimakoupoulos. In this, his third volume of poetry, Pastor Greg paints word pictures that portray both the struggle and fulfillment that define a life of faith. His repertoire of rhymes celebrate rite-of-passage occasions like birth, baptism, marriage and death as well as the major holidays of the church and culture. It is a volume that illustrates the poet's love of words and of popular culture. The author dips his brush into a paint box of hubris, humor and honesty.

"Gloria and I have been encouraged by word pictures from Greg's pen that have celebrated both our ministry and God's presence in our world."Bill Gaither, Gospel music composer/performer

"Gifted poet Greg Asimakoupoulos is a dear friend of our family. His poetry blesses, comforts, entertains, and provides inspiration for every season of life."Natalie Grant, singer/songwriter/recording artist

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