Tag Archives: battlehymns

COLIN (meloy)


the clang! of wind down American flagpoles
is the twang of victory, flapping eras of battle hymns
is the shifting of a continent by more than an inch
our unfounded fathers bickering at the unemployment office
and the country of receipts walking across the parking lot
in somebody’s pocket
on a keyring that unlocks every withheld freedom of life
and your own apartment sometimes when you are lucky
which you are, which you are, which you are
especially to feel the cold harsh bite of the wind
you are as ridiculous as a cranky infant howling
who has their whole life ahead of them
who knows nothing about presidential elections or having a lover
or cab fare or free verse or algebra or debt
who is so lucky to have no capital punishment to chew on
answers learned without
questions in a construction site requiring a hard-hat for safety reasons
whatever medicine you minister and administer
whatever gospel you determine and predetermine
whatever promises we made together to get her
skirting marginal history as if it were only his story
suspender poetry over the shoulders of Time’s castaways and cut-outs
a soundless filament waltz of progress which
is your squarefoot broom bristles
is your thumb on lightswitch replies
is voices out of hand missals, flouting maxims of relation
holiness like a kindly wrinkle from lives in the blink of an eye

the bang! of powder to make-up our lives in stages
is the slang of our ancestor’s brogue docking
is the promises at the bottom of a riverbed in the summertime
that you’ll not feel the drowning
under the record needle of haystacks in neighbouring towns
one good turn
of early morning like topsoil blown over
eardrums like canyons, open for visits, faithful to form
which you are, which you are, which you are
with patriot eyelashes like bushels of desert grass
batting a corn colored crop rolled out of beds
you are the one who is taking a bow
who is sweeping out of sight
who is weeping for wagers
or fables or morals or the nameless
who remain uncertain of their independence
or the hazards
that belong to the ground, as you stand it
whatever clover is reserved for lovers
whatever accordion shores offer more concord
whatever material is now immaterial
sunset promises you want to last forever
and a horizon that is a library of words on the shelf
untranslated, with the last of your concentration which
is a noisy prayer on the makeshift altars of victory
is the time at hand we pause to lament
is all the proof you need through the night
like someone’s name scrawled in the cement

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