They Don’t Come Easily!

i don’t find these days

that poems come easily. 

they’re no longer

at my beck and call.

these days, if i want one,

it’s as though, like my arthritic hands, battling the last squeeze

of toothpaste, my mind squeezes out a little word or two, some syntax.

the world is full of silences

those beats that save musicians

and frame sound.

I don’t find these days

that poems come easily.

they’re no longer 

at my beck and call.

these days, if i want one,

i get a slogan:

Water is life!

Alive, they took them! Alive, we want them!

Keep dividing, we will keep multiplying!

Not one less!

No justice, no peace!

This is what democracy looks like!

I don’t find these days

that poems come easily

they’re no longer

at my beck and call.

They’ve taken on their own lives,

picked up stones and chalk, 

made glue from flour and water, 

stayed up late with sharpies and spray cans, 

stolen paper from work, 

they’ve taken to the streets and alleys,

emblazoned themselves like wildfires 

on the skins of protestors,

started screeching like rape whistles,

burning like pepper spray and tear gas.

Peeking out behind the isolation curtains

of the headlines. 

There is no hiding from these poems!

They have minds of their own!

They just don’t come when called.

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