Note to Self, Easter 2018

Don’t imagine I’m nostalgic
For that younger me, half
My age, with hairband and
Dog. I’m older than I look
And possibly wiser. It is true
That friends and lawns and
Romantic rue contour
That picket-fence-secure me
As surely as the leaner leg
And the hand that now I only see
On my daughters, half as old
As half my age me.
Don’t imagine that I regret
Becoming this immovable object
Unamused at the attempt at
Being guarded by a force all too
Resistible. Even their backs
Look ashamed, resisting
Being named. Don’t imagine
That I can’t see the torn and slapped
Groped and grabbed women
Students who learn to adapt
Their innocence to this
New ‘security’: the name-tagged
Force, forcing a fresh
Resistance. The certainty
That there will be
No resurrection
Without insurrection.

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Petitions

semesterProtestGovernments are so often
Like blossoming pear trees.
I learnt this when I stood
One silent white summer
And thought of James Wright.
“Perfect, beyond my reach,
How I envy you.” he wrote.
“For if you could only listen,
I would tell you something,
Something human.” It smote
My just cause into dust. Trusting,
The petitioner stands, missing,
Often, the point of her own protest.
The government is not Yeats’s
“Great rooted blossomer”. The jest
Is on the trees, when you learn
That it is the heat, not the shade,
That frees.

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