Questionnaire

“Questionnaire”
(a poem by Wendell Berry)

1. How much poison are you willing
to eat for the success of the free
market and global trade? Please
name your preferred poisons.

2. For the sake of goodness, how much
evil are you willing to do?
Fill in the following blanks
with the names of your favorite
evils and acts of hatred.

3. What sacrifices are you prepared
to make for culture and civilization?
Please list the monuments, shrines,
and works of art you would
most willingly destroy.

4. In the name of patriotism and
the flag, how much of our beloved
land are you willing to desecrate?
List in the following spaces
the mountains, rivers, towns, farms
you could most readily do without.

5. State briefly the ideas, ideals, or hopes,
the energy sources, the kinds of security,
for which you would kill a child.
Name, please, the children whom
you would be willing to kill.

—-Wendell Berry

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4 comments on “Questionnaire

  1. Rade says:

    Amen.
    Too often we are willfully blind to the full consequences of our deeds, a task made easier by an industrial society that profits from such blindness.

    Like

  2. […] As Wendell Berry asks in his wonderful poem Questionnaire: […]

    Like

  3. Oh Sweet Lord. I’ve never read this. It’s shocking in its directness. How many are willing to answer? These are exactly the questions we Must ask ourselves and be willing to answer if we are again choosing the lesser of two evils. Choosing evil is choosing evil. Period. Today, I will not choose evil. And with any reasonable degree of understanding, once again, that is what we will end up with at the helm.

    Like

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