Let it be quick

Domestic violence is never an easy topic to address in any setting, let alone with poetry. And yet, where else should one seek to draw attention to the ugliness of the issue but through the beauty and precision of poetry? May these simple, unadorned words, reach into all of us and may we, together, be each others’ rescuers.

Let it be quick

The car screeches into the driveway, askew, radio blaring

and your hidden fears become visceral terror for what’s coming.

For hours now, neck craned, head cocked with ear against the door

your sweaty palms flat against the wall, you listen. Listen.

You flatten the wrinkles in your dress hoping against hope he sees;

he sees you,  not the face of his discontent, not the end game

of nights spent boasting of adventures never taken,

trysts only dreamed of in whiskey stupors,

of the feigned and faint glory days in High School hallway peacock parades.

“He doesn’t mean what he says”, you say.

“He’s just having a hard time right now”, you say.

“Oh, I just fell”, you say.

You agonize within, thinking tonight, just maybe, tonight…

he’ll see the girl who caused him to leave his hometown,

for you. Only you. Always you. That’s what he said at least.

You’ve parted your hair the way he likes

and even donned the Junior High barrette he insists is still sexy.

But as the door crashes open what little courage you’d mustered

scurries away like the mice living in your pantry.

And as the first fist comes, you pray:

“let it be quick.”

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Kill ’em all

An obvious risk to such provocative pieces is their potentially divisive, incendiary nature. I post because I am compelled to write what I feel. But I do so in full recognition that what I feel stands in contradiction to what many others feel. Hence, with conviction but also humility, I post…

Yes please, describe for us your toxic, platinum dreams

you grumpy old men, front lawn savages and blue-haired fussbudgets

whose projected fears force our embroilments.

Like a bikini at a funeral you bluster and fidget

and point fingers with one syllable jeers, taunting of yesterday’s better standing.

Only then will we learn that the beach of our desires

doesn’t meet your death loving, tea ‘n sympathy standards.

You clink glasses with friends at darts, or grab ass in the elevator,

but turn a blind eye to a man on trial

because his head covering took away your comfort.

Wrap yourself in the flag for protection

from those sandy, bearded bastards who kill your friends killing them.

Then, with hand on heart, the right politics,

a cigarette tucked behind your ear, and misty-eyed blindness,

you look for ways not to look for ways.

Let’s help our kids by killing theirs.

Let’s build our future by robbing theirs.

Let’s pad our budgets while emptying theirs.

Let’s speak for us by silencing them.

We don’t need to love,

just kill ’em all.

That’s what Jesus would do.