Preliminaries

Shut up, shut up,
shut up, shut up.

Red talk.
Oxygen theft. 
Blood mockery.
Beerhall chants. 

Shut up, we said 
to whoever that was
yelling over there.
Shut up, shut up,
we are trying to breathe.

Shut up, they said
to whoever they thought
was yelling over here. 
Shut up, shut up,
we are trying to sleep.

Shut up, shut up,
our fingers are barking.
Shut up, shut up,
they slap at their screens.

Shut up, they said, shut up, 
shut up,
and we said it right back, 
shut up, shut up, shut up, 
shut up.

Shut up, we said
when they said shut up or
I’ll give you a war 
that you won’t soon forget.

Now it’s been said
and they won’t take it back.
Now it’s put up
or shut up, shut up
and put ’em up. 

When they said what they said
they fired the first shots
and when we said what we said
we were dodging the bullets.

When they said
what they said
it was old and terrible.
We’d seen it before

so we said what we said
because we didn’t believe
they could say it again
without being made 
to shut up, shut up;

civility be damned,

we’ve seen this before
and no one seems to think
it can happen here
but it can and it has
and it is and it will
so shut up, shut up,
shut the hell up,
shut the fuck up

and aim
for the mouth.

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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