A worldwide survey

A worldwide survey was conducted by the UN. The only question asked was: “Would you please give your honest opinion about solutions to the food shortage in the rest of the world?” The survey was a huge failure. In Africa they didn’t know what “food” meant. In Eastern Europe they didn’t know what “honest” meant. In Western Europe they didn’t know what “shortage” meant. In China they didn’t know what “opinion” meant. In the Middle East they didn’t know what “solution” meant. In South America they didn’t know what “please”…

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Lyric

Will answers be found like seeds planted among rows of song? Will mouths recognize the hunger in their voices, all mouths in unison, the ah in harmony, the way words of hope are more than truth when whispered? Will we turn to each other and ask, how long has it been…how long since? A world now, a world then and each is seeking a foothold, trying to remember when we looked at one another and found—A world again—Surely what we long for is at the wheel contending. Surely, we’ll soon…

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Imaginary Morning Glory

Whether or not the water was freezing. The body would break its sheathe. Without layer on layer of feather and air to insulate the loving belly. A cloudy film surrounding the point of entry. If blue were not blue how could love be love. But if the body were made of rings. A loose halo would emerge in the telluric light. If anyone were entrusted to verify this rare occurrence. As the petal starts to dwindle and curl unto itself. And only then. Love, blue. Hallucinogenic blue, love.

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The Red Poppy

The great thing is not having a mind. Feelings: oh, I have those; they govern me. I have a lord in heaven called the sun, and open for him, showing him the fire of my own heart, fire like his presence. What could such glory be if not a heart? Oh my brothers and sisters, were you like me once, long ago, before you were human? Did you permit yourselves to open once, who would never open again? Because in truth I am speaking now the way you do. I…

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War V.S. Peace

In Iraq there is war/In Canada there is peace In Iraq I see blood on streets/ In Canada I see blood on Halloween costumes In Iraq I see and hear guns/ In Canada I see and hear guns in movies In Iraq I see rockets blasting/ In Canada I see toy rockets blasting In Iraq I sleep on the floor / In Canada I sleep on a cozy bed In Iraq my dream, to stay alive / In Canada my dream, become a scientist In Iraq there’s lots of hating/…

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Just One Word

Doubts and worries run through our heads We think the same thoughts Is he okay? Was coming here right? Was he afraid? Could he understand? Could they understand? Finally we go To pick him up from his first day We wait, tense, for him to tell us how it was He gives a happy smile and says, simple, “Good.” Relief floods over us, as we relax The teacher tells us how wonderful it was He fits right in, and for this, we beam At our son’s “good” Small, but can…

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Here I stand

I had a home, Somewhere far beyond the horizon Freedom, health and nutrition Things I had in reach, Now, it all lies in the ashes below. There is no space where i stand, Under the deep holes pierced by bombs, Hidden between all the people Soaked in blood and vomit, Here I stand. A weary cry comes from below. A sound which has no hope I listen carefully, And I hear it again. Now the crowd is silently moving. And the voice whimpers as the people push, All wanting to…

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Burning the Old Year

Letters swallow themselves in seconds. Notes friends tied to the doorknob, transparent scarlet paper, sizzle like moth wings, marry the air. So much of any year is flammable, lists of vegetables, partial poems. Orange swirling flame of days, so little is a stone. Where there was something and suddenly isn’t, an absence shouts, celebrates, leaves a space. I begin again with the smallest numbers. Quick dance, shuffle of losses and leaves, only the things I didn’t do crackle after the blazing dies.

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