2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 14

For today’s prompt, write a doomsday poem. Some of you may remember the world was supposed to end last year (actually twice last year), but that’s nothing new. Every few years there seems to be a new “end of world” prediction (anyone remember Y2K?). In fact, this year had a movie made after it in relation to the Mayan calendar (btw, my dad is one of those who actually believes in the 2012 doomsday prediction), and there’s a whole industry built around end times preparations. So why not write a poem about it?

Here’s my attempt:

“Tax Day Tanka”

They tried to warn me
(over and over) but I
wouldn’t listen, and
now, I’ll have to suck it up
and pay everything due.

*****

Did somebody say end of the world?

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307 thoughts on “2012 April PAD Challenge: Day 14

  1. cam45237

    Syrian soldiers shoot syrian rebels
    Women and children first

    Homes are worthless so its worth
    Less to have a home

    Nuclear muscles flex
    in the name of science
    While nuclear muscles
    err on the side of caution

    An honest man cant have an honest wage
    He may be honored by a single bill
    Or plug his pocket
    With a nickel

    Spain in turmoil
    Greece in tears
    And the coliseum crumbles

    We are still by race divided
    By finances defined

    Doom doom doom doom doom
    From the darkest depths
    The balrog rises

  2. Christod

    Love: reanimated

    If I could touch the void inside
    Myself, I would tell you it’s yours:
    You’ve had it violently tucked
    Away since the time you cracked
    My head open for it’s yolk

    Oh I am yours: heart, brain
    And the sweet rope of intestines
    As long as we both have limbs.

  3. Benjamin Thomas

    The Time will Come

    The end is near
    at the doors
    the end of life
    as we know it
    the end of strife
    as we show it
    the end is near
    for the proud
    the low, the naughty
    the time will arise
    for the humble
    arrogant, the haughty
    the time will come
    and the sun will shine
    with rays of healing
    in His wings
    these are true words

  4. LCaramanna

    Doomed: Not An Option

    Sleepless nights –
    assaults on golden slumbers.
    Raging madness of reality,
    brutally brandishing an obstacle,
    intent on destroying my dreams.
    Sleepless nights –
    Surrender,
    not an option,
    the victory will be mine.
    Conquer reality
    with dreams come true.
    Without my dreams,
    I am doomed.

  5. posmic

    A Shattering

    I was on the train
    when it happened.

    There was not so much
    a jolt as a shattering,
    as we all disintegrated,
    went back to where
    we came from.

    I was on my way home from
    the thrift store; I suppose
    the clothes tried first to go
    back to previous owners,

    but by now it must be
    that cotton has returned
    to cotton fields, rayon
    to the forest, polyester
    to an oil rig somewhere
    offshore; but there is

    no more shore, no forest
    or field—not that I can see
    from wherever it is I am.

    The pieces of myself
    still talk to each other.
    The language of cells
    still works, I guess,
    though maybe that
    will fall apart next.

  6. Catherine Lee

    Doomsday

    1. The cracked violin you gave me on my last birthday.
    2. Your faded blue tee shirt that I still sleep in.
    3. The ring that promised this day would never come.

    This is what I took from our house because the home
    That actually burned was built with the mortar of years
    And my hands could not touch the ashes left in that fire.

    I only took the things I could hold with two hands.
    I should have known that dreams were too big to wrap
    In newspaper and throw into the bag with my clothes.

    The objects in the backseat scratch at my periphery
    But each glance in the mirror shows that you were never
    As close as you appeared and I am just a pillar of salt.

  7. Sara McNulty

    Look Your Best

    When Doomsday arrives
    her hair shines,
    kohl-lined eyes,
    lips glossed`cause you never know
    who might still see her.

    If everyone goes
    at the same
    second of time
    then who cares how they look?
    Well, you never know.

  8. Buddah Moskowitz

    The End of the World

    It’s Saturday.

    I slept in late,
    checked the prompt.

    Then life
    just buffalo’ed in
    like it tends to do
    and I realize that
    if I don’t write a poem
    today
    it won’t be
    the end of the world,

    but
    best not to chance it.

  9. Michael Grove

    Probably Wrong

    They’re probably wrong
    but what if they’re right?
    I’m too strong to quit
    and too weak to fight.

    The world may not end
    while I am still here.
    So, I will stand tall
    with hope and not fear.

    I’ll write a new poem
    and put it to song.
    Then sing it for you.
    They’re probably wrong.

    By Michael Grove

  10. Dan Collins

    Age of the Jaguar

    Sometimes
    we peel the skin off
    a man, or pull out
    his heart for the heart
    of heaven, for the smoking
    mirror, for the five ages
    of light from beside
    the sea. We who come
    from across the water,
    from under the stars,
    have waited again
    for a feathered god –
    twenty days each
    sixteen times fifty-two
    twenty-six thousand
    years; and around
    the very edge –
    red-eyed serpents
    of fire squeeze the world
    into dreaming just
    before they devoure it.

    1. Dan Collins

      Age of the Jaguar

      Sometimes we peel
      the skin off a man,
      or pull out his heart
      for the heart of heaven,
      for the smoking
      mirror, for the ages
      of light from beside
      the sea. We who come
      from across the water,
      from under the stars,
      have waited these
      five suns in all their
      glory. We have waited
      for our feathered
      god again – twenty days
      each sixteen times
      fifty-two, twenty-six
      thousand years;
      and around the edge –
      red-eyed fire-serpents
      squeeze the world
      into dreaming just
      before they devour it.

  11. deedeekm

    The End

    bible thumping, fist pumping
    warning signs are everywhere
    children hungry, dirty laundry
    politikers say they care
    people jobless, even homeless
    healthcare pockets, full dockets
    we’re all part of the machine
    fueled by greed, cross palms with green
    seems like it all would go on
    even if we were all gone
    stiff necked people, don’t pretend
    could be tomorrow…
    the end

  12. Sally Jadlow

    Doomsday Poem

    4/14/12

    Every few years we hear the predictions,
    the same tune with different inflections.

    One claims this way and another that,
    how the world will end; we’ll all go splat.

    In truth, they’ll be one, but not caused by global warming,
    Mayan calendars, and such; but a cataclysmic storming,

    followed by a day to judge the living and dead by God,
    attended my every person who walked earth’s sod.

    God’s sheep will go one way, the goats another.
    Become God’s lamb; receive Jesus as your brother.

  13. HannaAnna

    At Last He’s Here

    The end is finally here
    The end of work
    The end of school
    The end of- “How will I pay the bills?”

    The end of too cold… too hot…
    The end of sickness… disease… suffering…
    The end of pain… loss… devastation…
    The end of death

    And he is here
    Life eternal
    His Second Coming
    Joyful for some, Torment for others
    My Savior and yours
    Jesus Christ… Finally… He is here

  14. Rosemary Nissen-Wade

    The End Foretold

    We waited on a high hill
    in a house with plate glass floor-to-ceiling windows
    looking straight across at the mountain.

    There were maybe twenty of us.
    Three days of meditation and feasting.
    And when I say meditation, I mean
    laughing meditation, crying meditation,
    singing and dancing and breathing meditation,
    and trance-like healing sessions too.

    My friend Karen (who died five years later
    but we didn’t know then)
    stood like an angel with arms outstretched,
    holding the energy for others to heal.

    My friend Kay, who shares with me
    Nepal and Peru as well as this home Caldera,
    talked with me over lunch. We explored
    garden and forest, walking together.

    On the last night, we all lit red candles
    from one given by the Buddhist monks —
    and that was from one originally lit
    by the Dalai Lama. All that energy handed on,
    rekindled over and over, that molten light.
    They are candles for peace, we said.

    We watched the dawn. The Y2K bug
    wasn’t real, though we had slightly wondered.
    The millennium arrived. We rejoiced.

    ***

    Later, of course, the new century
    astonished us all with terrors
    we hadn’t imagined. One by one the predictions
    are coming true. Are we moving towards
    the end of the world — again — or the Golden Age?

  15. drwasy

    THE WATCH

    After the wolves killed the sheep, then the children
    I fled the backcountry; without cricket and tree frog song
    the silence grew too deep.

    I packed light: food for a lifetime, clothes and boots,
    all the guns, a photo of my love, sewn into the pocket
    over my heart, the audio of our poetry.

    On the last night, I siphoned 30 gallons of ethanol to power
    the ATV and sloshed the rest around the cabin, the shed,
    the still. The timber flared with a loud wumph.

    Wolves gathered, their low snarls trailed me as I drove
    from the forest, the evening star obscured by smoke.
    It took three days to reach the City.

    From the tower I watched the horizon, the tinny pop of guns
    from the resistance punctuated the low whine of advancing tanks.
    For some reason, these noises comforted me.

    ***
    In a prose-y kind of mood. Peace…

  16. eljulia

    COUNTING.

    If I knew there’d be no tomorrow
    what would matter today
    would I count my disappointments
    or count calories for the day
    would I worry about the dishes
    of wearing comfortable yet stylish shoes
    I hope I’d be barefoot in the garden,
    eating chocolate, and laughing with you.

  17. PSC in CT

    Collateral Damage

    Programmed for self preservation
    she possesses strong
    survival instincts and human-
    (un)kind is peripheral to her plans

    Despite her seemingly frail biology,
    she will eventually prevail,
    her ecology, far more
    powerful than it appears

    Practicing natural selection
    with beguiling flair, she fools us
    into believing we lead this pas de deux
    while she choreographs our swan song

  18. Kendall A. Bell

    Hurricane disaster 2011

    The night before, the fire department came by,
    handed out fliers asking everyone to evacute,
    offered shelter at a church, but told us that
    our dog would have to stay behind.
    We stayed.

    We sat in our house and watched weather updates
    flash across our television screen, peeked
    through the curtains to see a barrage of rain
    soaking the streets. The wind blew some things
    around, pushed another beat up, already weather
    damaged shingle off the roof of our flimsy shed.

    The power flickered once, went out for a flash
    and then returned. It didn’t even interrupt our
    internet connection, which was notoriously quirky.

    The next day, we walked down towards the creek to
    see if anything was damaged or displaced. Nothing.
    There was some water that spilled over into the
    street that remained. Some branches that had been
    knocked off sturdy trees along the riverbank.

    We were glad we didn’t leave the dog behind over
    another media driven disaster that didn’t happen.

  19. JRSimmang

    His blood shot eyes
    blood soaked tee
    blood red anger
    mixed with whisky on his breath
    disguising his true insecurities
    as he dances in between the sandwich board
    cutouts claiming the end it near.

    He doesn’t believe it has come so soon.
    This firmament, he laments,
    this unhallowed ground,
    bred a wife and three sons.
    This terra firma, he regrets,
    this solid ground,
    bred a simple life and simple joys.
    His feet, shoed in sloppy drags,
    danced in a fever to halt the
    heavens from falling.

    But his hale warnings, his plea bargains,
    fall on deaf ears.
    Passers-by in their trenches
    and entrenched in themselves
    snuff out cigarettes on his pallid expression.
    Gum on thier soles,
    coffees in hands,
    speaking conversations to imaginary men,
    simply trot on by as he
    wails.

    His wife was somewhere,
    somewhere with his three sons,
    somewhere the world would be.
    The end is near,
    he has to believe.
    The end is near,
    he has to repeat.
    His simple joys had to be somewhere.

    And out here, on the street,
    his sign dancing his warning.
    “The end is near,
    for you, for me, for all of us.”
    As he looks to the sky,
    he wishes and hopes
    the end is certainly near.

  20. Jannelee

    DOOMSDAY
    The night was innocent
    And ripe with promise
    He showered and shaved,
    put on his best dress shirt
    Placing his hat carefully
    on his freshly combed hair
    he lowered his head
    and gave the old mirror
    his most beguiling look
    His fingers slid round the brim
    and snapped the tip
    then he stepped out
    into the balmy night air
    The old pick-up sputtered to life
    He could already hear the music
    the remembered notes
    She’d be there tonight
    It was over, the final decree
    that said she was blissfully free
    He waited for and hour
    that rolled into two, then three
    fear tore at his heart
    sweat broke out on his brow
    he remembered the rage,
    helpless as he held her hand
    while she told of abuse
    fear pushed him to the door
    the night was dark and starless
    as he raced the silent street
    red lights had no meaning
    he smoked his tires to a stop
    the ring of the pistol shot
    stopped him cold
    but the terrified scream
    melted his frozen muscles
    she stood over him, gun in hand
    he lay in a pool of red
    to save her from the awful shame
    he gladly took the blame
    dressed demurely,she came to the trial
    laid her hand on the bible,
    and swore an oath
    but the teary story she swore was true
    sealed his doom and broke his heart
    she looked his way as she stood
    a tear ran down on her cheek
    but the truth was in her eyes
    he would pay with his life
    for the woman he loved
    and wanted for his wife

  21. Andrea B

    Doomsday

    She woke
    under pressure,
    washing the dishes
    when you have to pee
    pressure.

    She peels off the cover,
    hip pop is her new
    subculture.

    She steers clear
    the reflective shower door.
    Fat eyeliner-lipliner graffiti
    covers years of vandalism.
    She addresses a wardrobe
    organized to settle
    social disruption.

    On the downstairs,
    she confesses
    new choices—
    hand cream
    over ice cream,
    buy catnip,
    sell short, cat-
    call-buying skirts.

    She confronts
    the roses on the
    skipping-breakfast table,
    and takes on their
    birthday wish.

  22. Sara McNulty

    April 14, 2012 – Day 14
    Write a Doomsday poem

    Rocking To Heaven (a terza rima)

    He rocks back and forth on his glider, eyes glazed
    to aid his muddled mind, cloud reality
    in a malleable shape of ending days,

    pondering as we all do, about unknown
    spheres where pioneers have blazed a trail before us.
    Tightly curled, the knowledge that his time has grown

    short, soon to abort the pleasures of this world,
    in which he feels content with the life he’s led,
    to a tranquil transition, as his kite unfurls.

    So we talk, and chalk up lists of fun times had,
    long-time friends, hoping to lessen the sadness.

  23. Sharon

    Give it a Try

    Doom and gloom
    Didn’t hang the moon
    Or put the stars in the sky.

    Don’t bother me with doomsday talk
    Don’t say it, just take a walk.
    Facts tell me why

    Each day is true
    Whether grey or blue.
    Get up! Give life a try!

    Though kicked in the shin
    You’re bound to win
    If you don’t sit around and cry.

  24. Mr. Walker

    Doomsday Preparation

    when the rebellion is over
    and those who would save us
    have been exiled by our petulant leaders,
    armed with their dubious rationales,

    when our culture is in ruins,
    the land a scar, the rebels
    billows of ash and dust,
    the grid gone, the fuses worthless,

    I will dart for my underground shelter,
    latch the lead-lined doors,
    and surround myself with the metallic
    staccato of my typewriter

    and write a poem before I die

    / / /

    Full disclosure: this is a poem I wrote in February to Wordle 42 at The Sunday Whirl.

    Richard

  25. taylor graham

    END OF THE WORLD

    Iva Grey, formed of the very cement
    of this place, and almost as old as Noah’s wife,
    believes the end will come

    when Dover Mountain is no more.
    The cement company worked on that
    for a long time. What’s left of the mountain

    stands like a half-bulldozed Ararat.
    Iva Grey’s son-in-law, out of work
    since the plant shut down, let the bank foreclose

    on his home. Who needs a house
    after the world ends? Cement-works gone,
    wind and rain will have their say.

    The half-mountain stands, a stub
    on the horizon, monument to what man does.
    Standing as long as the world stands.

  26. Bruce Niedt

    Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt is to write a sonnet. So here’s my doomsday sonnet:

    Sonnet 2012
    after Shakespeare

    Shall I compare you to the End of Days?
    You are much safer and predictable
    than cataclysm that the Mayans say
    will come December of this year. I will
    not buy this, can’t believe your grace would die
    in conflagration, earthquake, hurricane,
    your smile erased by some tsunami’s tide,
    your spirit melted in monsoon-like rain.
    But still, there is that chance they got it right,
    and this may be our last year on this earth,
    so let’s abandon hope and dance all night,
    and if there’s sunrise, watch for all it’s worth.
    So long as I can breathe and I can see,
    I’ll thank the world for your good company.

  27. Janet Rice Carnahan

    END OF THE TO DO LIST

    I guess if the world is ending,
    I’d better wrap it up!
    No more cards need sending,
    Less coffee in the cup!
    Will let the garden grow wild,
    No need to trim the plants,
    Stop perfecting each child,
    Or sewing up their pants,
    Why organize the house now,
    Get anything in order,
    If it’s going to end anyhow,
    Why not grossly trespass and loiter,
    Should I even plan the summer?
    Or hope for a pleasant spring,
    Really, it’s ending . . . bummer!
    Yet the birds still sing!
    Why hasn’t someone told them to stop soon?
    Their time is drawing near,
    Wolves howling at the full moon,
    Should both let go to fear!
    Someone must tell the children,
    To stop the laughing right out loud,
    If the world will stop, say when,
    Forget parades, parks any joyful crowd,
    Let’s see what have I missed,
    If doomsday’s around the bend,
    Guess I can stop the “To Do” list,
    Clearly it’s . . .

    The End!

        1. Janet Rice Carnahan

          Thank you, lionmother and Mike! Sometimes really serious topics need a bit of humor! Guess it brings some kind of balance! Thanks for stopping by and commenting! 🙂

  28. JanetRuth

    Doomsday?

    We acquire the art
    To close our minds
    To things we do not want to hear
    But God has said
    ‘Every eye shall see’
    In that moment when He will appear
    ‘Every knee shall bow
    Every tongue confess
    As stars rain upon the sod
    And we see Him
    The great I AM
    Behold; the one true God

    ***
    They call it Doomsday
    Ominous connotation
    But for salvation

    ***

    It must have felt like Doomsday…

    *“God himself couldn’t
    Sink the Titanic’ he said,
    I guess he was wrong

    *Walter Lord attributes it to a ‘deck hand’ at Southampton on April 10th 1912. He allegedly said it to Mrs Sylvia Caldwell, a second class passenger. See page 73 of the illustrated version of A Night to Remember.

    ***

    Doomsday at last
    Everyone relaxes…
    …no more death
    and no more taxes!

  29. Marcia Gaye

    No Need To Panic

    My crazy wacky heartbeat
    takes to heart each day’s conceit,
    It worries and it frets
    until overwhelmed, forgets
    to beat at all.
    Then suddenly it quakes to life
    and fibrillates in panicked strife
    of its own making.
    The doctor cancelled medication
    that for years gave regulation,
    and assures me this is not
    a doomsday situation.
    So when my heartbeat stutters
    and then goes all a-flutters,
    I just take a breath and smile.
    I’ll still be around awhile.

  30. maggzee

    The End

    The end is coming
    So what should I wear?
    What shoes are appropriate?
    What style of hair?

    I should just stop my diet
    Now dessert isn’t sinning
    But still, in the end
    I can wear something slimming

    We’ll gather the kids
    With some nice candle lighting
    Do you think the end of the world
    Will keep them from fighting?

    Some folks will worry
    About the message they send
    But what matters to me
    Is to look good in the end.

  31. Imaginalchemy

    IF I COULD DECIDE HOW THE WORLD WOULD END

    If I could decide how the world would end
    I would at least be nice about it…

    A worldwide flood of chocolate rain
    A solar flare that makes the earth smell like cake
    An erupting volcano that coats us all in mac n’ cheese
    Pizza bombs and atomic calzones
    An ice age of ice cream
    An earthquake of milkshakes
    Tornados of cotton candy
    Meteors of donuts and danishes

    …I think I need to go eat lunch.

  32. Mike Bayles

    Deadlines

    I have one hour left
    to write one more poem
    before the world ends.
    The sky overhead
    has taken on a strange color
    of some kind of yellow or red,
    some kind of color
    the world has not seen.
    I look for the right metaphor
    to express the kind of feeling,
    I’m kind of feeling,
    death,
    death now?
    But why can’t I believe
    the predictions made
    by the best scientists
    and fortune tellers to behold?
    Why?
    Why is there so much to do
    before the final rest
    and the end of time?
    Why isn’t this moment
    any different from the others?
    I try to squeeze my words
    in the time left for me
    while cursed by
    deadline, deadline, deadlines,
    and I almost forgot,
    my library book is overdue.

  33. Lana Walker

    December 21, 2012 in Prophecy!

    Been there, done that
    never comes to pass

    Such a strange brain
    we have
    wild ‘n weird gray mass

    Will it be the end
    this year
    Who can really say

    So live and let live
    and come what may

  34. Domino

    It’s Not the End of the World, Anyway

    Someone pointed out to me,
    not so very long ago,
    that people always talk about
    the way doomsday will go.

    The bombs will drop on everyone
    in cities large and small
    or maybe the Aztecs had it right
    and one day is the last of all.

    Zombies may take over soon and
    crave our living brains.
    (Of course the vegetarian ones
    will only want our grains.)

    Perhaps some careless scientists will
    drop an harmful vial,
    of something deadly potent
    dooming us to non-survival.

    Maybe the earth will turn on us
    it’s most annoying creature
    And swallow us up en masse one day
    to be a compost feature.

    Or maybe some religious nut
    has found the truth more dire
    And the unfaithful left behind
    will die in lakes of fire.

    And as I contemplate the end of
    all of our existence.
    And think that the ending of the world
    will stop our mad persistence

    that we’re the most important ones,
    the ones that run the earth
    and that no matter what we do
    we deserve that berth.

    When in all actuality
    if the people were gone forever
    the earth would just keep on going
    no end of the world whatsoever.

  35. Linda Voit

    Doomsday

    I
    A brilliant weapon wielded by some
    to gather fortune from others’ fear,
    it fastens to the tongue and spews
    fiery bullets toward hearts carrying visions
    of eternal gnashing and unbearable heat
    so that they can’t help but open
    their purses to ensure they are lifted
    above all this and above the poor souls
    who don’t get it.

    II
    I remember my Grandma saying
    if she had known ahead of time
    how both of her daughters were going to die
    ahead of her, and suddenly, in car accidents
    she would have probably gone crazy
    and their lives together
    would not have been the happy
    lives they were.

    III
    Carry on. You and everyone you know
    and love and everyone else on earth
    are going to die in fits of famine, disease,
    and catastrophic catastrophe any day now
    or on the specific day I foretell.
    Let me help you be ready to float
    above it all. It may make you feel a little crazy,
    but you need to think about this
    and with a little monetary support
    I can help you and others understand.
    You do care about others, don’t you?

    IV
    Doomsday – repent or die
    birds peck breadcrumbs in the shade
    of his cardboard sign.

    Linda Voit

  36. Arrvada

    The End
    By
    Arrvada

    The world is going to end one day
    Perhaps in a hail of fire from the Almighty
    Through volcanos, earthquakes, floods
    Through violence, pestilence and plague
    Through the Rapture or Global Warming
    Through Zombies or worse, not sure what
    But is that really the great fear
    That the world will end or is it
    That it will not?
    The world will end,
    But long after the human race has ceased
    After life and beings have evolved,
    Lived and gone extinct
    Someday the world will end
    When the sun has reached its final age
    Grown fat and red and giant
    It will envelope the world
    Destroying all the planets in it’s orbit
    A brilliant display until nothing is left
    But star dust and from the swirling mass
    Of debris and energy the cycle will begin
    Again.

  37. ely the eel

    After the Apocalypse

    After the Apocalypse,
    the skinny people will die first,
    the Nutrasystem people,
    the Weight Watchers and joggers.
    After Armageddon,
    it won’t be all bad.
    There’ll be no more ads
    for breast augmentation,
    e-mails for penis enlargement,
    no calls for dental implants, or
    teeth whitening.
    Cataclysm will chase away
    the need to get your belly
    toned, tucked and tightened,
    the desire for skin resurfacing,
    the non-surgical solutions! to
    thinning hair and poor eyesight.
    The Day of Reckoning means
    an end to rhinoplasty – creating
    beauty one face at a time!
    No sales taxes, no drowning in debt,
    no DUI’s, no parking meters and no
    meter maids. No more Craigslist,
    and, after the Last Day, no need
    for Suzy’s Coupons.
    Depression? Normal.
    Migraines? Everyone gets a few.
    Smokers? Go ahead.
    High blood pressure? You kidding?
    Of course there’s the little matter of
    Judgement.
    But, hey, it’s the End of Times,
    Not Eden.

  38. leatherdykeuk

    When the World Ends

    The world won’t end with a bang
    but with the growl of a dropped aitch
    and the incomprehension of a youth
    who spells ‘late’ with a numeral,
    and doesn’t understand the difference
    between the letter ‘O’ and ‘zero’.

    The world won’t end with a bang
    but with the roar of derision
    when the radio plays the original song
    and the kids think it’s an old band
    doing a cover of a Glee song.

    The world won’t end with a bang
    but with the whisper of a pen
    as state after state outlaws abortion,
    planned parenthood, women’s rights
    homosexuals, muslims, jews.
    As each Senator signs the legislature
    that separates the classes,
    makes women property of the husband,
    deports foreign nationals
    and indigenous Americans.

    The world won’t end with a bang
    but with the tears of the hungry,
    the poor, the downtrodden
    and the hiss of dust
    from the empty ghettoes.

  39. Jerry Walraven

    “It was really just a low flying jet.”

    All at once
    there was the sound.
    Coming from everywhere.
    Rattling windows,
    vibrating my bones.
    Looking up at the sky
    I expectd to see a sharp line
    as though the sky had been opened
    with a box knife
    and God
    would be looking down
    saying, “It is time.”
    My daughter,
    standing next to me
    said, “Maybe a giant
    is falling from the sky.”
    And.
    Maybe it is.

  40. Joseph Harker

    What I Look For in a Man

    On top of everything else, it’s fearlessness: the idea that
    this is the one who will still be there in the years to come

    when the twin candles of my eyes are blown out. I think of
    Homer, Milton, and Borges, I think of Thomas talking about

    “the dying of the light”. I’m waiting on the one who, after
    I’ve ruined myself writing four-point letters in small black books

    filled in the heartbreaking twilight, after my life has been spent
    scribbling all night with nothing but fig-scented votives for company, 

    will take my blind despair in his arms and mention: there is still
    touch, and taste, and breath across the smallest hairs.

    When the galleries of city and sky are painted a uniform grey
    I will map the inside of my own skin and learn the scents

    of music and joy– like Huxley must have done. And my man:
    I’ll have to learn to look for him with my whole body,

    once the jewels of my eyes are gone. He will guide my fingers
    to teach me Braille, all his goosebumps spelling one long aah.

  41. MsGenuineLady

    Doomsday prediction
    Is it fact or is it fiction?
    Is it coming or is it already here?
    Or will it never actually appear?
    Should we run or stop and face this fear?
    Do we have an option or is this our fate?
    Can we prevent or delay this Doomsday date?
    Questions unanswered, answers unknown to me
    I all know is I have today
    And even today I cannot guarantee

  42. DanielAri

    NAIL IN THE COFFIN

    and gentlemen, if you’ve never tried it—because
    for most of my life I hadn’t—go in for a manicure.
    Alice took me for my birthday one year, and once
    I’d settled into the cushiony pink chair, I felt quite
    pampered, attention on me; so now every so often,
    I get my cuticles topiaried and maybe a little peace
    sign or yin yang set on my vast thumbnail canvas.
    But last time, a woman enters demanding a refund.
    Her nail chipped within a day, and now she claws
    invectives and accusations while the proprietor tries
    to defend himself in broken English asserting nails
    chip during work. “I don’t work,” she blackboards
    then demands to see his license until he lets it slip
    that he does not have one, so she pounces on her
    phone, calls The Cosmetology Board—whatever
    that is—right there in the shop, calling him “Little
    Man,” and saying all she wanted was a refund, but
    now she’s on the warpath, ready to shut him down
    (if that’s something the Cosmetology Board does)
    all over a chip in her nail polish, plain red, I notice,
    not even pink and teal leopard stripe or floral array.
    The urge to say something fills me: it’s clear you
    don’t work, lady, or you would never have the itch
    to build doomsday atop your fingernail; moreover
    you would have compassion for the working stiff.
    You’d figure you’d flushed seventeen dollars and
    vow never to return and maybe vent on Yelp.com.
    But all I wind up doing with my new fingertips is
    shooting her dirty looks when I see her in the lot,
    in her Mustang, still on the phone to a lawyer, or
    the mayor, or her thug boyfriend or The Fingernail
    Commission. On the other hand, only one day later,
    a quiet Sunday, my nail polish chipped off, too.

    FangO

    1. eljulia

      i love the “cuticles topiaried” and “build doomsday on your fingernail” phrases. And just the whole story. But your phrasing made me see some of the things i have felt in a similar situation. 🙂

    2. Brian Slusher

      Lots of stuff to praise, but the phrase that sticks is ‘The Fingernail Commission.” Even if it didn’t really happen, it sounds true to me. I laughed, but I know it’s not funny–that’s the kind of tension I enjoy in a poem.

  43. Michael Grove

    I wrote this one last August. De’s poem above reminded me of it. Sorry for the “Old” work being posted (I won’t let it happen again) but I do believe this message can never be overstated.

    Hug Your Loved Ones

    Hug your loved ones while you can.
    You know not the master plan.
    Share a kind word and a smile.
    Reflecting bright light all the while.

    Hug your loved ones while you can.
    Fear not fire nor frying pan.
    Live for mercy, peace and grace.
    Spend time wisely in this place.

    Hug your loved ones while you can.
    It’s not of the will of man.
    Spread the kindness, share the love.
    Seek the vision, rise above.

    By Michael Grove

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