"That you may retain your self-respect, it is better
to displease the people by doing what you know is right,
than to temporarily please them by doing what you know is wrong."
~ William J. H. Boetcker
My grandfather’s green four door Ford.
I am not much wiser than five years old. My
nails dig into the leather of the stitched backseat.
The five of us struggle to
out-run a cloudy twister that pirouettes and
segregates the flat land of the Midwest.
I watch my past turn black out the rear window
with my sister.
On our knees we pray.
We speed to a cousin’s basement to surrender
to the howling
shivering words of the twirling wind.
We think—the word
the sun breaks through the clouds,
an apparition wakes the rosewood rosary
swaying from the review mirror.
I push fear from my face,
and watch the debris dance on the street.
The earth releases her heated yellow scent.
There is destruction and forlorn.
There is pain where change is torn.
An ordinary domesticated cat has a destined fate,
spinning into the tempest of the tornado.
I saw pictures in the newspaper of this pets’ demise.
On intention, feral could arrive, savage
to this plane, some say, there was so much rain
from that tornado.
Here on this planet
a forgotten fragrance, a constant insurrection ,
the temperature of the air
warms the wielded earth.
Her globe releases a scent we all know and
a carnal sound—implores power with
taught vibrato-laden strings--
black gravel flies, green branches break,
tin cans clank, scrap metal dances,
wind displaces a regalia of
broken surrendered homes.
Revolving lives roam
throughout history’s time.
We witness shredded color,
taste impressionistic flavor,
all discriminating to
a conscious cover
of humanities fate.
We feel the
the unsettled destiny--
the cat is black,
nobody wants it.
open mic tonight at - dverse