We are tools for thought,
mending souls that sometimes break
in the hands of ancient journeymen
who ply their trade for journey’s sake.
The hammer does not regard the hand
that grips and swings its body round
nor nails at which it barrels down;
it believes in why the hammer’s made.
Thoughts have worked in squalid rot
and built grand ships that carried us
to shores more fair than any walked,
so we — we suffered gladly.
Though other thoughts with little cause
have rooted thin in sordid men
making them forget to pause
before bringing flame to heavened ships.
But we cannot give credence to such claims
to stop the work to quench the flames,
for even when ships reduce to ash
they soothe acrid soils to grow again.
So hammers do not regard the hands,
nor the flames or hearts of sordid men,
but quietly the work is done
and all are better in the end.