These are people without importance
with day to day gestures
Who bring back to life both hope and happiness
between their hands
These are people without craftiness
Who smile to you when they feel good
But who hide their scars among the flowers of their garden
Their heart is a bit fragile
And their discreetness about their sorrows
gives them a gentle, quiet look, a bit distant
These are people without importance
Who sometimes don’t say anything
But who are present through their silence
when they are far away
It’s perhaps about these people that we think
When death comes snaking around the corner
and takes our carelessness with it some morning
About all these people without importance
With whom one feels so good
Who make hope spring back to life
And without whom we are nothing

(Editor’s translation of French songwriter, Yves Duteil’s “Les gens sans importance”)

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“The workers are not made of glass”
Leon Davis, founding President of Hospital Workers Union, Local 1199

an Oral History Project by Dr. Bob Allen, Technical Assistance Ron Gruici
Copyright 2007