A Steel and Granite Heart

By Stephen Brackens Brinkley

15 November 2018

First he came for the Arabs he labeled terrorists,

He sanctioned their oppression and added to their misery.

Then he came for the Muslims, categorizing them as

Enemies of democracy and threats to our way of life.

Next on his list the impoverished

Name calling their countries,

Branding them as unequal.

Then he targeted the handicapped

The weaker members of the country

Whether physically or mentally.

After, his gaze fell upon the first peoples,

Making them the brunt of his jokes,

Showing no respect for their rights,

Dignity and protectiveness of their natural resources.

He targeted those suffering from addiction,

Branding them as throwaways and criminals,

Tightening the already extremely taut noose

Around their throats, leaving them gasping for breath.

Calling wrong, right, evil, good and lies, truth,

He continued his highly infectious and toxic journey.

Then he came after the immigrants,

labeling them thugs, rapists and worthless criminals,

Snatching infants away from the mother’s breasts,

Slamming shut any door to a better, safer world

For the parents and their children.

The African Americans, the Democrats,

The bleeding heart liberals, the commies,

The socialists and the news journalists.

Next on his list were the LGBT’s,

After all, he was quoted as saying,

“If my VP had his way, they would ALL be dead.”

And finally, he turned his vindictive gaze

And actions against any and all dissenters,

Anyone who didn’t share his opinions,

His beliefs, and support his right to total rule.

Admiring dictators, viewing their unharnessed brutality

As true expressions of masculinity and raw strength.

Seeing compassion as weakness,

And kindness as vulnerability.

All the while hiding a dark, sinister secret,

That he is not like other men.

Unable to feel sorrow, remorse,

Empathy, sympathy, compassion

Or even mercy.

He is truly a man with

A steel and granite heart.


My name is Stephen, I was assigned the surname Brackens shortly after birth by my mother who provided it to St. Mary’s Hospital, (where I was born), to be entered on my birth certificate. Upon reaching adulthood I chose to change it after being told by certain relatives that my true natural father was NOT William Arthur Brackens of Evansville, Indiana as previously believed, but was, in fact and truth, a certain Thomas Brinkley of Madisonville, Kentucky. Given the new information, I changed (legally and otherwise) to the new surname of Brinkley.

Then came a difficult period of confusion as I was told by equally believable, and reportedly, reliable, sources that this was an error and William Arthur Brackens was indeed my true biological father.

To this day, I vacillate between the two, and apparently, short of some kind of morbid cemetery excavation and DNA analysis happening, if that is even possible in the two parties that would need to be involved, I will never, at least in this lifetime, know the absolute and certain truth of my paternal details.

After spending a few more years on the planet, getting to know myself a bit better and, most surprisingly, at least to me, even liking myself for brief and rotating intervals in those aforementioned years, and still carrying the changed surname of Brinkley, the realization came to me that both surnames are germane, valid and necessary contributors and descriptors of the person I have come to be and, are able to be used, with some accuracy, as designators of both particular periods of time and happenings in my personal life pilgrimage and can be utilized, to some degree, to chronicle and possibly explain the growth and development of my soul in my time here on Terra Firma .

This explains the genesis of the surname Brackens-Brinkley, currently in use (at least of the time of this writing). There are no immediate or long range plans currently being held to change it and it is doubtful there ever will be. And, as for me, at this particular moment of this particular time, I am okay with that.
There are some things that I would have you know about me right off the bat and, that being so and being important to me, I will bullet list some of them right now!

  •  I am male, 55 years of age (soon to be 56, as of 29 May).
  •  I am Anglo-Celtic-Native American (English, Irish and Cherokee).
  •  I am a Hoosier having been born in the state of Indiana.
  •  I am an ordained Christian Minister (Non-Denominational)
  •  I can hold my own in Spanish (Espanol).
  •  I have great love and admiration for my family members and there is not another woman in the world I love as much as my eldest sister and little mother to me growing up, Karen.
  •  I AM A LIBERAL in MOST, but not ALL politics. I have lived in the great state of California, both Northern and Southern since 1980. I wear the “I AM A LIBERAL” badge prominently displayed and say it LOUDLY and PROUDLY !!! If YOU are NOT a LIBERAL, it’s fine, I will still talk with you and exchange ideas, but I do offer you my CONDOLENCES…lol…
  •  I am exceptionally blessed to be the spiritual son of the late Reverend Charles L. Kaldahl (dec. 2007) and his loving wife and partner in the Lord’s service the Author Jean Clark Kaldahl (“Katrina Remembers” available at Amazon) and the love and gratitude I feel for them both I cannot adequately express.
  • Pastor Charles, or as I always called him Father Charles, was a Mystic and a chosen vessel for the Lord that he served, filled with the Holy Spirit, manifesting the Gifts of the Spirit wherever he was called to go. (The Gifts of Tongues, Miracles, Healing).
  •  I have been aware and conscious of almighty God since ever I can remember. I am in love with Him. He knows me better than even I know myself, but seeing all my many flaws, He loves me still. What an Awesome God we serve! Thank you, Divine Master, from the bottom of my heart and I am certainly NOT a perfect man or a perfect vessel for you, but I am your servant.
  •  I started reading at age 4, how that happened I am not at all sure, but somehow simply was able to read. The Evansville Press newspaper and the Holy Bible were my favorite things to read.
  • I am and have been for many years an ardent supporter of the Palestinian people.The current system of Apartheid that is being perpetrated by the Zionist government  in power in Israel is deplorable and intolerable.  WE WANT FREEDOM FOR ALL!
  • My personal heroes:   King David of Israel, Lord Jesus Christ, Prophet Muhammad, Mahatma Gandhi, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Servant of God Monsenor Oscar A. Romero, Archbishop of San Salvador, (recently declared a martyr for the Christian faith and is currently in process to be declared a saint of the Roman Catholic Church). (PBUT).   Modern heroes:  President Jimmy Carter, Elizabeth Warren, Dorothy Day of the Catholic Worker, the People of Palestine and my brothers and sisters suffering in Syria and in so many parts of our world,  those who daily face danger, violence and lack of safe haven, most especially the children who are not being afforded their childhood , the laughter, the dreams, the play they should be allowed to have and the working middle class  USA, All those who stand up for and speak for those who have no voice and fight the good fight against repression, oppression, tyranny and evil.

It is a truth that some exceptional, strange, in some cases, marvelous, and in others terrible, events make up this biography and it would be unfair and in no case helpful, both for me and for you, the reader, NOT to make mention and expound on a few of these. I honor you and look forward to sharing with you. Peace be with you. May God bless each and every one of you.