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Fists on Fire: Poetry from the Heart of the Revolution

September 30

by Sarah Menefee


the human now
are those who take with them
nothing but what they are

through the broken of this world
the wasted and the dry

the new given birth to
any where

torn away torn away

anything else borne away
on this churning

all that isn't that
fat heaps of all that's not

swept into the forgotten

how did we give our hearts
to such dead things?

I wept for my use of him
hearing the word lust

in the harsh light of this
slipping-away

if I could tell you what he said

the voice of the earth
and all abused dignities

side by side in naked night
and that's the love-making:

the human voice saying what it is
down in the pit of separation

at this crossroads
the companions:

a man who has nothing else at all
and his broken-
tailed
dog

what we wrot there
is here: emaciated one-legged
beggars
said the report

one who feels like mine
though I've never given him a dime

because I've drawn and written him

more desperation than fear keeping him propped
half in the traffic's torrent
on a crutch his pink-kneed stub
cossed over the other leg

was said of Karachi now in sight

wobbly and bent: how does he stay upright?

there's a call that's desperation and more:

the deafening sigh of a landslide

rose madder of her skirts
baby brother on her back

in the dust of the global camp

silent moon floating above the city

his face in the shadow of a doorway

so far away

what are you dreaming?

your crutches propped on the shimmering wall

I hear the word rubble again

hear: brothers and sisters

across the street another is ranting and crying

rose lake rose madder
of their ragged persistence


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