As I sit sipping black, sweet coffee,
The sun pouring into my room
A weight is on my shoulders, though I am not called to duty
My heavy heart echoes upward to my mind, though no one is asking anything of me.
The gravel in my throat and fire dimmed in my belly are much like clouds before a storm to my body
For I know that now is the time of monsters,
No lesser evil exists, just the same cruelty in different forms-
A clown mask versus a face that looks real, but is not what it seems.
At a dinner party, I would be the nit-picker,
The judge and jury of hopes long left for dead,
A pebble in your sandal,
One or all of these for noticing things polite people don’t say out-loud.
But in this time of legal thieving,
Of murderers with clean hands and dirty records,
I am the one who disturbs the dinner parties, the polite conversations
Saying there is no good choice.
We failed to create good choices.
We have been polite for too long. Trusted gradual progress to keep our conveniences.
And what we see now is monsters with different names, but similar interests,
With opposing presentations, but twin aims.
There is no liberty without privacy, no democracy without accountability,
And since too few kept watch with their tired eyes
and not many stood up on their aching limbs,
And our comforts are many, sourced from ravaged lives -producing guilt-
And those of us with ravaged lives hold tightly to what little we can source,
And the manufactured exhaustion burns-out the anger necessary to fight an overwhelming force,
Now is the time of quiet, mainly blood-drained, phantom chaos,
Bubbling with both possibility and violence.
In the morning sun that ends every night of plentiful sleep,
At the bottom of every cup of sweet black coffee,
In the ebb and flow of clarity in every debate we face,
Our very steps down streets and sighs of pleasure in the shadowy dream of night,
Everything worth living for rests in the grip of power we bestow in great numbers.
The weight whispers this warning:
What would displace and kill for profit across the sea
Will disempower, disenfranchise, and leave to die on our shores for its gain,
For this is not about a personality or dislike,
The monster is what it is both in deed and in name.