Canary In The Mine

View the shame parade

complete with photos

the worst on the planet

with their hoard, listed in order.

This is a sick dysfunction,

perhaps the sarcastic

illustrious praise

at their misdeeds

is too subtle

immersed as we are

in this madness.

A rus-in-urbe rooftop garden

trucked-in soil

and pumping water

to complete the illusion

of what is only

natural.  When we ground

ourselves and face the need

that looks so much like greed

and claim it,

how do we read

the cast of billionaires

and what is our recommended

treatment for these outliers

of the human condition?

Inspired by: Hoard, Order, Rus in urbe and Illustrious and the Forbes list of billionaires.

Advertisements

Change of Tack

Winter knocked the wind

out of my sails, frozen

in this bay with no power

and no justice.  Come thaw,

I will set out once again

like these migrating ducks.

How many lands have

my ancestors shuffled through,

eking, aching hearts,

dreams to glide

to prosperity 

or at least

fairness?

Indigenous to a mysterious

past, far back beyond

what’s remembered.

Stranger here

and the earth is muttering

darkly with the disrespected

bones we feel

in this thick air.

We open to the despair,

the only bridge

to hope

that tiny glimmer.

Every intuitive leap

brings us closer

to the edge

of change

like spring,

that long-awaited miracle

palpable

rising.

Inspired by Justice, Power, Thaw and Sail.

The Layers of Now

The knight-errant delates

the enchantress

to the medieval tribunal;

she’s tortured for heresy

and practices of power.

And even now we carry

that shadow impossible

to touch, its weight forcing

our pace.  We believe.

You’re too big for your britches,

my grandma warned. So let’s get

naked, converse with

dinosaurs like a three-year-old,

delighting in the tune

the ancient memory of our being.

Shall we dare the dark

to reach for stars

our own relations

pointing precise lines

of connection, winnowing

past the satellites thrown

like so many toddlers’ toys

in the messy skies?

Clean up, clean up, we sing

over the Wi-Fi pledge

one global chorus

injustice and rubbish

clear to our eyes.

Do you see that, too?

Validated finally

while on the world stage

greedy monsters’

unreined stampede toward certain

disaster

keeps us horrified

and static.

The cordless frequency of fear

corralling us

fenced in seeming separation.

We chafe and squabble,

point fingers and cry,

restless

while under our feet

the only necessary step

simple

calling

until finally we tune in.

Inspired by: Wi-Fi, Knight, Delate and Pledge.

I Need A Miracle

I’m huddling in the last

days of winter and how

do people stay alive?

When that dark wind

sprays madness,

do they simply nestle

under comforters

slack-jawed and snoring?

I wheeze until I rise

long before the sun.

The sameness feels

like shame.

My ancestors spoke words

that had no meaning

to the people they slaughtered:

money, value, property,

own, discard.

Propelled by myths

of separation, we settled

and moved,

dispossessed

and greedy for everything

we can’t see

and can’t say.

We’ve put a price tag

on the gift and how can we

continue this interest-bearing?

Once we blamed the regal

heads of state, so made

a single alteration

in our wealth

driven by war

consuming

consumed

consumption

our progressive wasting

away

and tell me, please,

how do we stay

when we can’t take it

anymore, screaming

through the birth pains

coming of age.

 

Inspired by Regal, Alteration, and Spray

This New Story

I remember laughing

— so long ago and far away

from this sea of pain

we float in oily

separation on the surface.

We polish words like zenith

and nadir to allow smug

disdain to flavor

our perceptions.  As if

we’ve forgotten our connection,

that contemptible, lamentable

big toe

down in the despicable depths

of a different

less-than galaxy.  Not our kind.

Quite isolated and useless.

When we peer with

bleary eyes

from the binging,

will it occur to us to tune

in to the child

picking through piles

of discards

our hunger

inseparable?

Willing at last to be labeled

crazy

as we affirm

these crumbling foundations

lie.

Lunatics released

from the narrative of denial

of the negative space

which illuminates

our unity.

We’ll laugh later.

Now is the time for the cleanse

of searing tears

just before we welcome

everyone home.

Inspired by Occur, Zenith and  Tune

New phone, who dis?

I used to fantasize

my family tree grew

from the nobility.

I’d say, “Off with her head,”

to seize my cousin’s power.

— Maybe this is a Scottish

Stuart thing.  A child, I’d watch

with a fire, my heart

desperate to make sense

of the outright imbalance

that no one acknowledged.

And then the teenaged avalanche

of insights, someone didn’t 

share and we are all

descendants of that

hoarding evil.  We started

as stardust, so why do we

idolize these pretty faces

glimpsed on their expensive yachts,

their feet firmly planted

on our delicate necks?

We don’t even squirm,

lost in our visions —

perhaps even their

merest touch

will gild our desires.

When will we rise

and claim our connection,

tear down the illusion

walls and awaken

to hear

the cries

of our cousins?

Inspired by:  Nobility, Watch, Avalanche and Fire.

The Art of War

The internment of hundreds of thousands of poor and mentally ill people has been a driving force in achieving our record levels of imprisonment. ~ Bryan Stevenson, Just Mercy.

This sweat of daily practice hones

my clumsy two-handed heft

of a broadsword and my intent

to decapitate the enemy

with one swipe.

It’s all a head game.

Raise my temperature

unholy passion.

The enemy is all around me

and I’m striking

because I’m good

means you’re bad

and I can’t let you in,

an evil virus infecting me.

No empathy; welcome

to the prison nation.

If you’re rich, you’ll pay

a fine, but if you’re a poor

sinner, you’ll become

the currency. 

Build more

places of incarceration.

He’s obviously guilty, my mother says,

or why would he be in jail?

Yet even she is nervously

watching the cop on her tail.

She’s white; he won’t shoot.

She thinks her daughter should write

about nice things, not stir up 

trouble.  In her police shows

the SWAT teams break down

the doors and trash the wrong

house, leaving without apology,

intent heroes

on the trail

of the real miscreant.

We count our wealth

hoping it will buy us salvation

because a prison sentence

would be fatal.  We lock

the doors against the threat

that follows us inside

like smoke, and we cannot

catch our breath, so busy

feeding the flames.

Inspired by Broadsword, Empathy, Temperature and Passion.