(War) good God y’all

What is it good for?  Absolutely nothing. ~ War, Edwin Starr

I confess to be an avid

collector, growing, of the myriad

faults in the parroted party line.

I’d plan my argument

against their ideology, just

a typical rebellious teen.

Now I grope towards

emotional maturity, that mysterious

platform hidden by my fog

of codependence,

like Bugs Bunny’s a-ha moment:

of course you realize this means war.

Letting go of resistance, not fighting

the warriors at their own

game — and yes, bombing and killing,

starving and stealing

is a rich man’s power play.

Nodding a fond farewell

to peacing out

which so appealed in my childhood

songs, the bombers turning

into butterflies above our nation.

How is it we ignore the years

of slavery, the genocide of First

Nations, the unprecedented imprisonment

of the poor?  How do we pretend

the violence paid by our taxes

is necessary?  We’re urged

to choose a side, when both parties

barely glance up from their grisly

feasting, mouths dripping with

the blood from our hearts,

as they dimly notice

the foundations shaking

when we understand the pain

of the bit and the reins

and their heels digging in.

Inspired by:  Avid, Collection, Ideology, and Plan.

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Begone, Foul Demon

Is this guy 72 or 12?

And I immediately offer an apology

to all the wise preteens.

This immature dog lumbers

in resentment, caught in a trap

of his own devise. We’re watching

in horror and a certain glee

sure he will chew off

his leg in spite.  How can we expect

his metamorphosis, ensconced as he is

in a reality TV show, where the art

of the deal is saying, You’re Fired?

The ridiculous pantomime frayed

holes gaping and fixers

scrambling for a foothold

in our belief — because once

we awaken, this will scatter

like long-forgotten leaves scuttled

by the fierce winter wind

stirred into a final frenzy.

The eye-opening storm of common

sense a catalyst for

our own transformation

in heartspace as at long last

we seize our power.

Inspired by: a government shutdown, and the prompts Resentment, Immature, Metamorphosis and Lumber.

End of Empire

A nation held
hostage for a wall
that will never exist,
arrogant pride forcing
800,000 people to work
as slaves. Nothing new
like all women toiling
without wages to care
for the heart needs. My gratitude
app demands I celebrate
three things.  How can I

stop there? Last year, I mourned
a world my children will never
know. Now
I let go of my resistance.
Patriarchy carried us here
but these superficial constructs
melt away when we halt
the narrative. Easy when
a red-wigged buffoon tries to support
this vividly revealed
nonsense. Yet we love
legends

and how
when each word is weighted
with societal significance
when the structure
of grammar and punctuation
damn our creative
thoughts flooding our vision
with muddy imprecision
how

do we begin
to face
the mother goddess
birth a new creation
this global being
fair exchange
self-love

how
do we invent new metaphors?

The icy control thawing
the mansplaining droning on,
we plant in this richly
composted soil
so long neglected
teeming with treasure
cultivating precious
food for our knowing hearts

which hungered
in the old stories,
useful
myths for a captive audience,
now
just a trap
old languages
which have never
paid the living
wages we merit
and demand.

Inspired by:  Three, Wall, Thawing, a new moon in Capricorn and a partial solar eclipse.

Plays By Intuition

So many women in my lineage

had no chance to grieve:  

file that in the DNA

and hope for someone like me

to open

a container big enough

to hold the river of sorrow

without being swept away.

Precariously crumbling footholds

where I patrol.  In the darkest hours,

often forgetting who I am,

losing my light,

peering into the rising

waters crashing below me.

The lineage-trauma breathing

through me, and I’m pondering

madness, defined as it is

by people who know

the control of the narrative

is imperative.  I mean, I’ve been 

the pinball

racking up impressive scores,

slamming into an obstacle

and triggered into flight

only to hit the next

target, over and over.  

Is my age

showing here? Does anyone

play pinball anymore?

Such a counterintuitive move,

to simply relax, falling

past the electric shocks

into the drain. 

Not in this society,

missy.  You stay in the game.

All the rules defined by 

the people who need

you to be distracted

when your rage ignites.

Look online, track the

spiky statistics to determine

who likes you.  The days

spinning, whirling, sick

until the sleepless night

claims you

and dark thoughts lead you

once again

to the steep cliffs of despair.

Inspired by:  Madness, Spiky, and Ignite.

You’re In The Navy Now

Hat in hand, offering his strength

in return for a little food,

some cash, a tiny house,

the promise of training

and transferrable skills.

Pushing past people

shivering with cardboard signs

and dead eyes, wrung out

and discarded on the sidewalk,

he doesn’t recognize these

brothers.  Fixed on the prized

traditions serving

my country, travel the globe,

defend the spoils of the one

percent.  He’ll carry their plunder

out of the danger zones

with a crisp yes, sir and straight

carriage, posing on command.

In ten years, he’s never voted,

and he doesn’t care to focus

on politics, his resolution

increasingly on the pixels

of pure survival.  They’ve offered

a sweet signing bonus,

the perfect segue from rags

to riches. 

I’m not consulted.

What do I know of war,

besides marching against it?

In another time, I might frame this

as ironic revenge

for the missteps of my youth.

He still calls his childhood

idyllic; truly wonders why

his brothers are in therapy.

Today the only job left to me:

relax in the arms

of the supportive universe,

watching as each taut thread

emerges now, loosening

as the tension releases

all the invisible pressure

on all these unreachable knots.

In my dreams, my great great

grandmother holds my face

between her hands and kisses me,

surrounded by ancestors

gathered to say, this is so.

The way is mysterious, lit

by what reaches through the cracks

of our carefully constructed

cages. Suspend judgment,

the entanglement of worry,

as each step is

allowed

in its fullness.

Inspired by: Traditions, Resolution, Revenge, and Segue.

Siu Yin

According to the urban dictionary, Siu Yin is Cantonese for little swallow.  It signifies that wherever you are, you can always find your way back home.

We try to scrape off the dirt

from our inception

as teens, denying our roots,

caught in the pursuit

of autonomy, anxious

to wash away any trace

of the entanglements

we struggle against.

Give the finger.

Raise the fist.

Caught in the web

we glimpse its ominous

glimmer in just the right

light.  And the old ways are lost

so we talk suspiciously

of conspiracy, puppet masters,

seizing the perspective

of the powerless victim,

the one that keeps us in

resistance, or medicated, lost

to the dark secrets

of the new moon

invisible before us.

We splurge on a temporary

pleasure, paying interest for years.

And then we are old

and learn to relax — at least,

those of us who have crashed and burned

in an almost fatal crisis —

into the abundant universe

unfolding in slo-mo.

Subtle beauty available always

under the structures of the prison

we build so industriously,

tumbling into bed

exhausted, our only vision

the next layer of walls we can

erect come that nebulous

teasing tomorrow.

 

Inspired by:  Dirt, Inception, Pursuit, Splurge.

Virtually Empty

We sink uneasily

into our corpulent bodies

bloated with excessive

ingredients that never satisfy.

Longing for relaxation,

to close our eyes

erase the schoolbus in Yemen

and the children dead by U.S.

complicit

silence

means support.  How much do you pay

Jeff Bezos for slave labor?

There is no simple purchase

in this world.  The cheap

throwaway is detrimental

even fatal to another being.

We cruise virtual aisles

filled with pirated plunder,

exclaiming with pride

what a bargain,

uttering an oath

at a hint of true cost.

The one percent dine

on delectables snatched

from our local noses.

Guards patrol gardens

and we huddle, hungry,

at the entry gates

of the promised land,

heads bowed,

eyes glazed

as we enter the flickering

screenshots of a more

palatable feast,

one click away.

 

Inspired by:  Relaxation, Detrimental, Corpulent,  and Oath.