Day Twenty-Four: ‘Blockade’

April 24, 2013

Frankly, I don’t blame you, Bill. The vultures

at the papers would’ve buzzed above like saws

until your pruny hands folded at ninety.

The stories would never die. The hawkeye lens’d

fix forever on your wilting smile. So your

swinging exit, as treacherous as it was,

just fits — “A man who died in grief: a martyr.”


This town runs full-bellied on dribbling courts

and to hell with those whose greed upset the balance.

You should’ve known, but we can’t grudge it now

in the charred remains of mid-decade finances.

A clear choice — throw a rope and get a building

named for you, else rot in mediocre bronze

until the facts emerge as forehead sweat.


We endure your end as marathoners arc

toward promise, first through ribbon, shelf dreams clutched

in pious victory. The crane has come

to raise your name. The dark penance begins.

The forest down the highway has a fire

that decimates the brush, finds the seed again

and plunders on as lurching transformation.


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