poetry critical

online poetry workshop

American Hurricane

nobody knows how we all got into the room
not exactly, not really
but they’ve all got theories
turning behind their eyes in insidious whorls
like so many ants having lost direction
marching solely by scent
toward some dark and agitated center
so dense and intoxicating and inescapable
that they’ve either forgotten  
that where they’re supposed to be going
could not possibly be there
or worse yet
no longer cared to find it
only to defiantly declare it found, this place
in which they were always meant to die
all of us now all here whirling in a conference room
in a holding pattern before a pedestal
pocked with branded microphones
moored here by maelstroms started
by tempestuous philosophies
dreamed or designed by soothsayers in climates long ago
when we didn’t know better than to see shapes in the clouds
and take it as a promise that it was all for us
and not for them
we are ever-renewing refugees of the storms started inside of us
and we’re sick and we’re tired and we’re hungry and we ache
but more than any rations, any fresh water, any reason to stay
we need rescue
we need someone to come into this room right now
with the right clothes and the right podium
someone from the right places with the right things to say
that knows about microphones and their seriousness
and how to use them
someone who can tell us
about storms like we remember them
to assure us that it’s over and that it was worth it
someone to tell us what the hell we weathered this storm for
and just what it all means anyway
because we’ve been waiting for so long
and so many people keep dying while we wait—
man cannot live on “wait” alone
what will they say
whoever is really back there
finally, when they realize
the festooned ante-room they’ve been holed up in
for as long as they can remember
has no backdoor
how embarrassed they’ll surely be
when they realize they’ve kept us waiting
how sorry they’ll be
and begin to sweat a little when they admit
they didn’t have time to prepare any remarks back there
it may look nice to us but it is suffocating
and that the tumult of storms is the nature of the thing
that it is all so complex
that our suffering was necessary
and has been so beautiful to watch
and will they tremble at all
when the day finally comes
when the moment is forced to its crisis?
when the only way out of the room
is through the storms
started by warm waters dribbling from their mouths
and the inciting winds of their speech
when they finally realize
the storm has reached their shores?

9 Nov 18

(define the words in this poem)
(24 more poems by this author)

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