Judge: Beyond the Courthouse Door


Atop the steps, the oaken beams, on hinges finely wrought,

Stand guard before the rights for which the Founders lengthy fought.

The halls beyond, the marble walls, the shelves with dusty tomes,

The statutes, masked and wielding, standing guard upon the domes.

Outside the tumult swirls, from the crowd does rancor pour,

But the fervor of the day must fail, beyond the courthouse door.

No hue, no creed, no length of years, no stature great or small,

Will stop the lady clad in robes from standing straight and tall.

No tongues offend, no vows affront, the laws can see nor hear,

And yet that very blindness makes its vision strangely clear.

For it matters not who stands upon the hallowed pine wood floor,

Each one is treated equally, beyond the courthouse door.

Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp, we lift our scales to thee,

To keep us fair and keep us just will ever keep us free.

No aged colossus stands astride the entrance to these halls,

Yet all redress their grievances within the public walls.

The huddled masses yearning, the tempest-tost and poor,

Are all on equal footing, beyond the courthouse door.

We hold these truths, protect these rights, ensure equality,

Secure the vast inalienable grant of liberty.

In pursuit of happiness, our quarrels here we air,

The course of human circumstance, elusive truth ensnare.

Impelled to act by life’s travails, by causes we abhor,

Peaceful resolutions lie beyond the courthouse door.

And though we all may enter, and though we all may see,

The archways yet refuse admittance ideologically.

Not hate, nor bias, fear nor shame, nor inequality,

Can penetrate the sanctum of this legal polity.

As to secure the blessings, that break upon our shore,

These base impulses cannot push beyond the courthouse door.

A true more perfect union, formed for all posterity,

A place to come for justice, we seek with clarity.

And yet we are imperfect, and yet we strive and fail,

But ever will the fight go on, until we can prevail.

With humility and mercy, we strive forevermore,

To truly seek out justice, beyond the courthouse door.

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David Hejmanowski

Contributing Columnist

David Hejmanowski is Judge of the Probate/Juvenile Division of the Delaware County Delaware County Court of Common Pleas.