Daily Archives: August 6, 2016

A Country Of Sick Men

Originally posted August 28, 2013.

Comb-overs, wars,
long nosed cars, long reach guns, 
filibusters, weaponized God, hangings,
unfortunate colognes, blood feasts,
casual seizing of women, of children,
of other men, shared ignorance
of lack of consent;

leveraged buyouts,
wolf pelts, blessing of
radioactive oceans,
balls of old oil
in the bellies of seals;

blank-eyed drooling
in rooms full of vintage guitars
and game balls,
blackout drunks,
hard-engine bikes:

all the exquisite arts of suicide and genocide.

I was born there, live there mostly,
certainly will die there,
will die of being there.

There are women there too.
Some of them are sick too
but mostly, I think, they are sick
of the sick men.
They have stories to tell
but if you want to hear those
don’t ask me to tell them.
My tongue’s more than a little sick.
You can smell it a little
or a lot.  I know I can smell it
every time I speak.
To hear those stories,
get away from me,
get into clean air,
go to the source,

It will seem then

like a different country

What It Will Take

It will certainly not take
another poem, 

or comment thread, 

or hand-wrung tear 
of dim empathy 
from me.  

It may take nothing
from me, in fact,
except surrender

of whatever I have that 
is only mine to offer:
my reserved place 
in line,

my nodding acceptance of it,
my learned willingness
to get along

by going along. 
My fear-frozen tongue.
My centrality.