THE UNRETURNING, 2019
(after Wilfred Owen)
Suddenly cops crushed black citizens, hurled
Their expletives over speakers. The Wall
Was code for “Fuck You,” immigrants appalled
When cages signaled the end of their world.
On CNN I watched, tried to be woke.
Each one whom Life exiled I named and called.
But dumb Poetry did nothing. Enthralled
With Justice, I was naïve when I spoke.
The Dead peered at me. I scrubbed pots with Dawn
As if I could scrub the Dead from my mind.
Like the sink, my imagination drained.
And I pondered how the World has withdrawn,
Gagging on Religion, closing the blinds.
I made sure my door was bolted and chained.