Silent Alarm

I’m so tired 
of all this outrage, tongues

clacking surprise,
horror, post-verbal wringing

of digital hands
in cyberspace. I mean, it’s been

a colony for a minute now.
People keep forgetting — 

one privilege of being
a colonizer, I guess, no matter

how many generations you are
removed from the first,

is that you are alllowed
to forget

how the good old gears
turn and grind and

who and how many get ground
changes, but the colony itself

always remembers 
that it was built to grind. 

I am trying to be like
everyone else around me 

and be shocked and surprised
and wring my hands

and say the right things
but I can’t.

I can’t. I feel alone
here because none of this

seems new to me except
this general bewilderment 

that it’s happening, as if
all the shrill wailing of history was in fact

a silent alarm and only some
heard it, while others have had it

in their ears from birth; now it seems
everyone can hear it, 

but most are paralyzed,
and those still in motion

are scattered and separate,
grains fallen unground from the mill.

After centuries
of listening to that,

the wailing is
an insult

almost as loud to me
as the grinding.

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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