First published in Contemporary Haibun Online 15:3, October 2019. Originally written in December 2013. See also “Historical Haibun.”

Freedom is indivisible, and when one man is enslaved, all are not free. When all are free, then we can look forward to that day when this city will be joined as one and this country and this great Continent of Europe in a peaceful and hopeful globe. When that day finally comes, as it will, the people of West Berlin can take sober satisfaction in the fact that they were in the front lines for almost two decades.

        All—all free men, wherever they may live, are citizens of Berlin.

        And, therefore, as a free man, I take pride in the words “Ich bin ein Berliner.”

                a pebble in the actor’s shoe—

                the chandelier of memory

                crashes to the stage