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University of Connecticut University Libraries

The Good Man
for Roger L. Crossgrove

The good man's history flies away before him
like a dance-partner's broken string of cultured pearls,
leaving him
holding all those glowing memories
in the goblet of his upturned hands.
And people rush to bring him more, more
reasons for his generous thanksgiving.
Blessed from birth with a good
family, a good mind, a good
sense of humor, good nature and his gift,
the good man multiplies his talents
an hundredfold, blessing from their births
his own good children,
and participating in creation
in other joyful ways as well.
In the picture-book garden of virtues,
without fanfare, without flags,
the good man gently illustrates honor.
Gray-haired, smiling, he holds
toward the reader his joined hands,
a bowl brimming with light.

Marilyn Nelson, Connecticut Poet Laureate
December 24, 1999