Thursday, July 23, 2009

In Time of Plague

This appeared in Lyric.

This morning there were microbes on my walk,
Said Alex, and I swept, then scrubbed. I smell
Invasion, which is not repelled by talk.
He power-washed his porch. I wished him well.

Affliction has no limits. In the trees
Bats plot the overthrow of priest and peasant.
The grass is crowded with bug-born disease:
Ants march, and they will not make conquest pleasant.

I wash my hands of this. And that. The soap
Is dirty now, though Alex claims a cure:
One quart ammonia, sublimated hope,
A heart that’s tainted, latex gloves too pure

For dirt’s adhesion. Listen to the song
Of angry grackles: armies in the sky
Will drop their worms upon us before long,
Then move into the rumpus room and die.

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