Martinizing the King


Martin Luther, righteous King,
made the Reformation sing.
Popes and peasants, out of key
turned it into misery.
German beer and Roman crimes
made for most uncivil times
much like our own. We must confess
rights and wrongs we yet possess…

Half a millennium later on
a Baptist pastor and his son
took this noble Saxon name
and furthered the Reformer’s fame.
Some revisionists deny
St. Martin Luther’s role, and try
to minimize theology
in civil rights chronology.
The second Luther of my song
inspired—but did not last as long.
Social Justice notwithstanding,
King’s successors need re-branding.
Politicians steal his mantle,
cloak their lies in his example;
agitators claim his glory
editing God out of the story;
educators sing his praises
but some people’s conduct raises
doubts about that dream of King—
and hope… and change…  and everything.



Martin Luther (King)


Because his Christian father so esteemed
that German protester who dismissed the pope,
His name reached heights few would have ever dreamed
In our days of easy change and godless hope.

A posthumous nation drones: yes we can,
forgetting he was a Baptist preacher
a theologian—perhaps  Republican . . .
I remember him as a  scriptural teacher

Calling his country back to God. The haters
closed their hearts to the righteous prophetic word
(as today’s deck-shuffling race baiters).
Many who play that card still haven’t heard

Those words from Amos, that thundered sentence.
speaking of more than merely civil rights.
Such lines should spark nation-wide repentance
as long as we still keep him in our sights . . .