stuck in swamplands
it seemed the pain would never end
a cycle of torture, anxieties about futures
that would demolish me
leave me in ashes
in a bombed-out city
during an irrational war –
it took perseverance to pull myself
from rubble, trudge forward
all while asking
is there any meaning
to this constant struggle?
(Photo by Elvis Bekmanis on Unsplash)
Look at our history, we’re a warlike species
we wish to beat + battle
but can we foster peace?
Piece by piece, we lunge toward an unknown future,
fighting animal instincts –
military tanks rumble toward me,
I step barefoot, bloody over broken glass
armed with a lotus flower
to combat their firepower.
(Photo by Paul on Unsplash)
I’ve always been a big John Steinbeck fan. So I was pretty excited when I picked up In Dubious Battle from my library. It’s not one of Steinbeck’s most famous books, but it’s written with the same energy and zeal of all the other books I love by him.
When democracy died, I was reading Kafka –
gunshots blared + factions fought for ideals
they thought worth dying for –
TVs tuned to Washington +
the White House went dark,
troops marched + destroyed dissidents.
Buried deep in this sea, there is ancient treasure –
it’s been hidden for ages, from a sunken ship
that carried gold and human remains,
but all that remains
are brittle bones, skulls + chests filled with fortune –
I’ll dive deep + discover it, even if it kills me,
bring it back to this sandy shore so I can
explore this coastline dotted with land mines
from a distant war – the war that took my father + tore
this island nation to pieces: the woman wailing,
lonely in their huts without their husbands +
the children afraid of the night
when mutant-men prowl swamplands of death
+ devour human and beast alike.
(Photo by Max Okhrimenko on Unsplash)
Satan rebels and fallen angels follow him
to the underworld – wings clipped, eyes ablaze
with red like the demons they are.
Stand atop this holy hillside and survey the city –
if you are the Messiah, then prove it.
It’s 6:48 am and I am walking onto a bus
We are no longer able to be alone
The government has deemed we must stay together
This is my first day on the bus – I thought I would be on it longer
My start time is at 11:42 am
As I am ushered off the bus after twenty-five minutes
I am given directions on my phone and told to stay with the group
I must plan my escape, I must be alone