Barbarians

I’m not worried about
the long run with these
barbarians. They give off
the whiff, the white heat
of desperate knowledge.
They know they’re done.

It may take twenty
or thirty years, hundreds or
thousands of dead for that
to come to completion.
It won’t be pretty,
but it is inevitable.

We know it too.
We understand their 
fear.  Which is not to say
we feel compassion for it 

or that we should; there’s been
too much of that already,
too much care for their feelings,
too much accommodation 
to their ideas as we twist ourselves
into painful shapes to prove we
are not the same as them, when truth is

we are not.  Never have been.
Any assumed parallels 
come to a vanishing point
in every single instance.

Plenty of immediate killing things
to worry about
in the air, the water, the heat
and the cold and the growing wilder winds
roaring over us all. They had their hands
in that as well, of course, and soon enough
those things will do their worst.
Who knows yet how we will survive those?

But the barbarians, the torch boys,
the crooked crossing guards, the pale
first responders to dog whistles, the wealthy
in their slit-windowed financial houses, 
the small monsters in the pointy hoods?

They will do their worst, knowing
how little time is left to do it.
Maybe decades,
maybe a century; maybe.

No thousand-year
self-satisfied reign.
No. It’s time.
They know. 

This war
is how they mourn.

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

2 responses to “Barbarians

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