history rolls in and out and back with the tides

First published in 1993, Lillian Allen’s collection of poetry “Women Do This Every Day” included this not-so-blind item, made less scathing — and, in some ways, sadder — with events and non-events of this past year and a half:

Dictator
(for Haiti)

the dust that makes you will someday
turn to mud in the rain
and fertilize land for the peasants
its fruit shall bear no resemblance of you
only a song of the past about evil days
long gone
shall we remember your name
dictator

Evil days, not long gone, but parallax. A long conversation on a longer car trip recently had me listening to these words come out of my own mouth:

“I don’t know how I feel about right and wrong anymore.”

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