New Beginnings


Here’s to the friends who love us well

   and all the rest can go to hell

     we used to say,

         raised glass in hand.


But something happened

   hate fell away,

     so now we tell our enemies as well

         we have a new command:


To love all neighbours glad and mad

   to cry with friends when they are sad

     to laugh with others when they’re glad

         …these are new beginnings.


To love our wives in need of a touch

   to find new hope when life is too much

     to sing a song, lift a crutch

         …these are new beginnings.


Stop in the street when a poor person calls

   take lonely people out from four walls

     pick up friends when you see them fall

         …these are new beginnings.


Here’s to the challenge

   of being a friend

     when someone cries and wants it to end

         …wants a new beginning.


New Year’s Eve, Winnipeg, December 31, 1993

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