What We Heard

- after "El Viento Inquieto," Armando Valero

No one could deny the wind
had been restless, spreading 
its rumors among all 
who would listen. 
It touched everything—
cigarette wrappers 
on the ground,  discarded 
cup sleeves, loose siding. Perhaps
its biggest hunger was to itself 
be touched.  But think of every 
picture you've ever seen 
where a figure in robes 
or somber uniform, assigned 
some official duty, fails to keep 
his eye on the horizon or 
his face unmoved— Perhaps 
a boy in the crowd wanted to tug 
at  the buttons of his coat;
perhaps his bladder filled,
like a brass goblet the sun 
suddenly conspired to tip over 
on the cobblestones.  Perhaps 
the wind brought urgent
warning of thousands coming 
down the avenue, breaching 
security, battering down 
the Capitol doors. At any 
moment, someone would 
ram a flagpole into his chest, 
douse people and barricades
with gasoline. Anything 
might happen to be in
its path, to which a match 
could be lit; to see what 
kind of flame a frenzied 
wind could fan higher.

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