Listen, they told me, trust
in your superiors.
They are older, wiser than yourself. Survival
is simple. Do as youre told. They who make
the rules know whats good for all. Yes, I told
myself. Why complain. Who am I to object?
I was told they were dirty, their language corrupt.
That they were terrorists who wanted to destroy
our way of life so I took that crown and pressed
it down upon his head.
Honor, god and country demand we do cruel things,
if only to prevent a greater evil to come, so I whipped
him till he bled. I took three nails, pounding them into
his hands and feet. I ask you, in defense of motherland
and homeland security how far would you go?
The Weight Lifter
In his mind, fear of laughter
and ridicule follows him out into
the yard beyond the arbor, down steps leading to his fathers
Here, he confronts himself in a place he feels safe where the voices
in his head stops and time melts as he lifts and his body glows
from the sweat of constant repetition. He removes his shirt.
Here, there is none to joke about his folds of skin or the pimples
on his chin or his funny voice that pops when under stress.
Outside, beyond the window of himself birds engage in their own struggle
while he twists, kneels, forces his wayward body to exercise till
quiver, his knees shake, and he senses a calm beneath his world of
But his flesh has a mind of its own. For weeks he has endured but
remained the same though he has changed. In ways his mind has yet
Despite the setbacks, he keeps returning to his fathers workshop.
He wont give up and so he comes to understand that alive in
that seeks to soar there is always a question of failure before flight.
Having tasted laughter,
seen much of pain,
I see in tears
a precious grief,
the blood of lambs
Tears wash clean,
anointing the joints
of our stiff grief,
we chill to carry.
More agile than a scream
tears wash clean,
no creature moving
is immune. No sky
without its share of rain.