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Sad and Gentle Giant

by Jim Glaser

Demonstrations in the wake to the refusal of two grand juries to indict police officers in the deaths of unarmed civilians are taking place today across the country.  Nyack resident and poet Jim Glaser offers his impression of the events surrounding the death of Eric Garner in Staten Island.

Look at his eyes

his face

hear his voice

“Officers, I’m not doing anything

wrong. Just leave me alone!”


Watch his arms


like a flailing child

trying to clear a space of safety

trying to clear space to breathe

around him

Prolong this moment

Stand for this moment with him

hear his tears of anger

and fear

a man alone

desperate for help

Stand with him

Watch the pack slowly circle

draw in

Stand with him

Be the cop on the beat

who wasn’t there

who comes up just then

and says

“Hey Eric

what’s going down man?”

who puts his hand on his shoulder

and says

“Hold everything….tell me, man.

It’ll be ok…Tell me!”

Jim Glaser is an old eastern/midwestern guy who was born and grew up in the woods and snow and somehow got to California where he taught high school science for 29 years.  He now lives in Nyack, NY.

Nyack People & Places, a weekly series that features photos and profiles of citizens and scenes near Nyack, NY, is sponsored by Sun River Health.

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