Character Study The Iranians and the Afghans are very intense, The Russians are very intense, And now the Americans are becoming very intense. Perhaps the '80s will be the decade of the intense. I recall that the '70s also began as the decade of the intense, But then dwindled into the decade of the big buck. Perhaps the '80s will too. In a way I hope so, Though between the greedy and the intense There is only a low fence. And if I had my druthers I would hasten hence From both of them, into the land of the wise With mild eyes. Further Druthers Also, I, industrious for others, untiring , compassionate, Dream of a splendid project, as big as America For a strong-muscled mind, Whitmanian, with great lobes: To create and sing of a new democratic equality Not of time but of space, The space of the New York Times and The Washington Post, Whereby each full page of pleading and bleeding and seething Taken out by a Party or Lobby or Pahlovi-Khomeini Is matched by ten thousand, nay, maybe a million sad pages For the inheritors, long announced, long awaited Of earth: the poor! -- without dollars or armies Or oil wells or acres or lawyers or banks or congressmen! You would sing, great lobes, of their number majestic. You would face the powers of space and tell them how to be Large, and contain multitudes.