Poem from: In the Realm of Neither



In the enormous corridor of sorrow

masked Napoleonic pygmies play with human
souls in the
shapes of coke bottles and guided missiles

and the clatter they raise
is more deafening than silence but

leads to the same end the same bolted door

A gigantic wheel rolls down
sorrow’s enormous corridor aclattering

as if to challenge with grief its mere
invention as the era of slaughter

though it doesn’t matter

I can’t find my eyes among the rubble

A tsunami traded for the killer instinct in
the heart of man might set out a tea set
in the enormous tidal wave enough to
engender a pretense at civility though

no one finds himself more content
than the self-justified mass murderer

at home with his happy shadows

7/26/2005 (from In the Realm of Neither)

This poem was written at the height of the tragic summer war in Lebanon, and the sentiment continues into the seemingly endless day of tragedy in Iraq and elsewhere. Arrogance is the vice here, and Napoleon has always typified for me the arrogance of a leader who rather thinks he is God. It’s a huge mistake… and everyone suffers. Because at base they are intellectually, emotionally and spiritually stunted, and God intervenes, much to their surprise I’m sure, and cuts them down at the end.

Categories: Poems