We wanted a city for the heart

to have a heart in— not one that made
graveyards of streets where thousands of souls
rose up with the wings of a deranged congregation.
How terrible to think especially of the young
who’ll never get the chance to practice the simplest
acts of living: mornings in a schoolroom, chanting
the alphabet’s bellweather— M after L, X after
W; every dog belonging to its home, and not
to a shackle and chain. Who spends the days picking
through skins discarded by others, to find one pure morsel not
tainted with decay? Rejoice if you can for those who will see,
a split second before the blast goes off, a vision of their own
fate caught in the crosshairs of history. It’s a gift not easily
come by: to hear above the noise a clear note that summons
remembering; that makes a lake of all the nights we mourned,
over which we bend to surrender the empty boats of our hearts.


In response to Via Negativa: Contractor in hell.

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