Daily Archives: August 29, 2016

Splintering

Splintery enough 
for ya? Tension —
can’t live with it, can’t
drink enough to kill it.
It’s like walking through
blood soup lately. I’ve got
wet legs and famished
eyes. Did you hear the 
forecast? They say it’s 
all over the whole damn
country and getting worse,
every city’s a flood plain,
every town a fire zone,
every road a rain of bullets,
every kid’s a potential orphan
and every parent’s got a wound 
open for grieving. There’s bound
to come a moment soon
where we stop calling it
bad weather and call it climate change,
stop calling it protesting and call it
uprising, stop calling it a great country
and just call it a country bearing up
against splintering, stop pretending
it wasn’t built on cracks to begin with,
stop pretending it’s not inevitable.


Revisionist History

Originally posted 3/20/2012.

In the full history of governments
it has never mattered how they start
as they’ve always ended the same way.

The venal game their way to power
and stay there regardless
of the label they chose to wear.

In the full history of nations 
it has never mattered how you love them;
they’ve only loved you back a little, and only at certain times.

In the full history of history
what happens has never mattered;
all that ever matters is what is said

about what happened
or did not happen, or is said
to have not happened.  

I tell you these things
not to make you despair
or get you angry.  

I tell you this not to make you
shrug 
away the urge to justice
or fall into dumb acceptance;

nor do I do it 
to allow myself delight
at your earnest helplessness.

I tell you this just to say
that battles are never won; instead
they become games to be replayed.

You will lose some, and win some;
some will die playing,
killed by others who are also playing.

There are no nations but two: the strugglers
and the lords. 
Both are everywhere 
and speak all languages.

In the history of humans
there’s dancing and loving
and making of art and music,

good sweat,
grand tears,
and a lot of laughter.

Don’t confuse those 
with history and nation
and government.

If you want to pursue happiness,
by all means chase it — but always recall
that history and nation and government

pursue happiness too — 
and they do it, always,
by hunting you.