It is IN CASE OF EMERGENCY BREAK GLASS time.
Mattis is leaving and he resigned in the most admirable way imaginable. He wrote a polite yet powerful resignation letter that, I believe, will tip the scales of this presidency.
There will be a before Secretary Mattis’ resignation and an after Secretary Mattis’ resignation.
The center will not hold.
Carl Sandburg has been my enduring poet since I was twelve, but now I turn to Yeats.
The Second Coming
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
Source: The Collected Poems of W. B. Yeats (1989)
The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats
“It is regrettable that the President must now choose a new Secretary of Defense. But I urge him to select a leader who shares Secretary Mattis’s understanding of these vital principles and his total commitment to America’s servicemembers.”