Poem for the Trump Inaugural: "The Turning"

us-flag-distressThese truths we hold to be self-evident…

The Turning
     – Samhain 1991

1.
In this dry land
crickets fear to chirp
for waste of moisture.

Rattlers bleach their bones,
listless in the summer scald.

2.
I don't want to say too much

	for fear of being misconstrued
	or maybe
	for fear of being understood all too clearly

so here's your warning – 
sometimes the blooming of flowers is a literal thing,
unfurling in the dewfall to kiss
mother sky good morrow.

And sometimes wolves change their sheep
clothes for pinstripes.

Then

	these truths we hold to be self-evident

fade to black,
seven ancient words
lost in the pageantry and white noise –
bites, topspin, code.

Make no mistake:

	style has triumphed over substance;
	our shamans hire out as consultants;
	God is coming to pay-per-view;

and a thousand points of light
are less than nothing
in a million miles of darkness.

Surely some gentle beast,

	its hour come round at last,

stirs,
	casts its drowsy eyes
across the land.

Surely it wonders –
what is this terrible myth
My Word has become?

3.
If there are gods of rain,
of sky and storm season,
if there are gods...

I face the Samhain
moonrise,
walk a circle three times and
burn a prayer into the wind.

Rain on us
as though it never rained before.

Teach our desolation of drenching,
our deserts the wonder of floodplains.
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