Marilyn Manzo: A favorite poem

Rags for Heaven
by Clem Bascar

This poem to me is one of the most powerful, deeply moving, and beautiful poems that I’ve ever read. It caused goosebumps, stayed in the brain like forever….and made me feel closer to heaven.

Marilyn Manzo, Inpatient Pharmacy Department, SCVMC
Milpitas


Rags for Heaven

It isn’t the exercise of power that one gains strength
but in its constant restraint;
the greatest being that ever lived
won eternity in his stillness.

It isn’t in the arrogant display of authority
that one begets respect,
but how fairly and humbly one dispenses it;
Justice isn’t giving someone what he needs
but what he truly deserves.

No one acquires dignity in the sufferings of others
nor nobility at the expense of the slaves;

Heaven comes closer to one
who gives up the best part of himself
to fill
the emptiness of others.

Clem Bascar
from Fragments of the Eucharist

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4 Comments

Filed under Favorite Poem

4 responses to “Marilyn Manzo: A favorite poem

  1. Wow thanks Marilyn for sharing this poem I see why it means so much to you. I appreciate this project by Ms. Ashton to post these regularly so that we can be exposed to wonderful pieces of literature.

    As someone who is part of the fight against modern day slavery, so many of the lines from this poem rang deep in my heart. I plan to share it with others, as well as, print it out and keep it visible as a reminder to myself.

  2. Marilyn Manzo

    Thank you for your comments Felicia, I’m very glad you were touched by it too. Yes, thanks to Sally, we have an opportunity to share the poems that we like and may it have a positive effect on the residents of Santa Clara County too and beyond. I’m especially grateful, that the Rags for Heaven was chosen to be posted on this very significant day, 9-1-11. My heartfelt thanks.

  3. Thank you Felicia for these kind and inspiring words about “Rags for Heaven.” You make me feel standing on cloud nine. Hope “Rags” will bring grace and discernment to anyone who falls under its poetic spell.

  4. Marilyn Manzo

    Thank you for your comments Felicia, I’m very glad you were touched by it too. Yes, thanks to Sally, we have an opportunity to share the poems that we like and may it have a positive effect on the residents of Santa Clara County too and beyond. I’m especially grateful, that the Rags for Heaven was chosen to be posted on this very significant day, 9-11-11. My heartfelt thanks.

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