Thursday, December 19, 2013

TWO FIRST BLACK PRESIDENTS AND A FUNERAL
We elected him as a mirror,
And because he wasn't George W. Bush,
Racially mixed, he seemed to reflect US well,
Kids and wife; finally, a First Lady with a tooch!
A human Rorschach,
We projected onto him what we wanted to see,
Which has led to massive disappointment,
Because he just isn't all that we thought him to be.
Chin and nose up in the air, aloof, cocky, and distant at home,
"Willing to work together" words for the sake of the mic,
So it came as a shock when Obama went abroad,
And proceeded to act like a tike.
In the spirit of Mandela, shook Raul Castro's hand,
But can't be bothered schmoozing "The Hill,"
At Madiba's memorial, busy flirting and joking with Helle,
In plain sight of his wife - despite her giving him a look that could kill!
Old enough to know behavior appropriate for the setting,
Why the selfie? Not as if photogs would not be recording he was there,
It took a seat change to settle him into the solemnity of the service,
Momma Michelle not so gently scolding His Arrogancy with her stare.
Amidst the host of dignified dignitaries from around the globe,
The leader of the free world acting like a child, immature,
Mid life crisis? Take a lesson from Pope Francis, Time's Man of this Year,
Stay focused on "that vision thing" to build a legacy that will endure.
Or pursue "common ground," like those newfound grownups,
Paul Ryan and the Speaker of the House,
They're taking your name in vain on Obamacare; "stay the course" on other issues,
Man that megaphone, instead of momentarily pausing to squeak like a mouse.
It's easy to project superhuman qualities,
Shrug off the first signs of cognitive dissonance with a wink,
Two first black Presidents and a funeral,
Have given US a lot to ponder, leading up to 2016, much about to think.
Karen Ann DeLuca

Sunday, December 15, 2013

8 P.M. IN THE CITY
When a quarter moon can’t illuminate,
neon does just fine.
Hairstyles bob in the bouncing light.
Arms are branches suitably gold leaved.
Good old saliva. Good old smoke.
One spits down. One floats up.
City air, can’t get enough of its
grease-dipped oxygen.
City gardens, love those butterflies on fire.
And nothing like burned-out tenements.
Who do we bomb next?
Kids on welfare are watching the skies.
And what fish the brown river cannot kill
are immune until tomorrow lunchtime..
Meanwhile tens of thousands of rough gourmets
are devouring the menus’ temptations.
In clubs, hormones are boiling on the dark suit stove.
The people of perfume, of money, of sushi bars
and Robert Ludlum, stream through theater doors
to catch a falling song.
And I love car-parks like I love bad breath,
six story ones all the better.
No one will find an exit until one a.m. at least.
Better hang in the glittering hotel lobby
and imagine you’ve enough left over for a room.
What a sublime consciousness
is steel and brick and concrete and glass.
Even William Blake can feel a poem coming on.
On highways, on narrow roads,
a million cars are gulping down the world’s gasoline.
That’s what you get when you just can’t get enough.

HER SON IS IN IRAQ
Three months gone, and the nightly
news has never been louder.
Is it too much to ask of war to be silent.
Combatants, insurgents...
who makes a place for them at the table?
And a reporter in the battle zone
talks calmly into a microphone.
He doesn’t kiss his wife long distances,
merely speaks for the corpses at hand.
Three months gone by, it’s six now,
and everyone in uniform knows her son, every
helicopter flies him somewhere,
every rifle round has her screaming “Duck!”
A child of four killed by a roadside bomb.
Well at least he’ll never grow up to be dead.
And there’s the reporter again,
walking slowly through the rubble
that’s some suicide bomber’s handiwork
while, in the background, the locals
are left to wonder who he’s talking to,
why his back’s to them.

CHURCH BELLS MAY RING
How loud the cry of church bells on this night,
high as spire spearing cloud
and echoing through the valley.
No tune exactly, merely a ding
and a dang and another ding and dang,
counting out the hour, shrill and solemn.
The father wakens from his sleep.
Church’s ding is countered by his “damn.”
The mother still knits in the parlor.
She awaits the telling dong
but if won’t come, not for cross,
not for prayer, not for the plaster Virgin Mary
staring down at her.
The kids don’t care. They’re buried under sheets,
headphones blocking out all sound.
One man’s ding will always be a child’s air guitar solo.
How loud the cry of the people on this night.
A father’s “damn.”
A mother’s disappointment.
And kids, a world away.
Ding. Dang.
 


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

My soul is eviscerated & hanging to the slaughterhouse wall, but
you don't care, my darling/ you don't care at all/ the pieces of
Humpty Dumpty cover the floor/ I gather the shattered shell, but
my efforts to glue them together come to naught/ the shell just crumbles in
my fingers into dust/ the more I try to fix him, the more futility rules/ soon
I am beset by hobgobbolins, ghosts & ghouls & surrounded by a
chorus of mad fools/ they see what I try to do/ they mock me & laff, until
the beauty of yr image shows, & their derision becomes their jealousy, but
I'm handcuffed by futility/ the best I do is observe yr beauty & am amazed.
O darling, take me off the wall/ take me from the shattered pieces/ I shall
not wallow in them longer/ U make me better than this/ U make me
climb into the sun/ I wrap up the fire & light & bring them as a gift/ I
also bring myself for U to hold/ U make me better than I am because I
need U because I love U/ if there's something U don't have, I'll
give it to U/ if it's worthy of yr love, my darling, it's yrs,
yes, my splendour, yrs . . .
 
Fritz Hamilton