Somewhere a fly


Somewhere a fly

Somewhere, a fly walks face,
proboscis probing
like a dowser’s forked stick,
as it will,
the plain of cheek,
the ridge of nose,
edging tarsal lace
about the pit of mouth,
cutting a slant
through stubble.

Somewhere, there is a great buzz
over a bulged belly
and a foot that was pounded board
rots to punk,

and a person–somewhere, a person,
becomes less human–
and now, I don’t speak of the dead–
by pinching others apart
as if these others were
flies on the face
of this planet, plucking

would-be wings, hanging limbs
as things, targeting with slews
of water, currents
of all sorts; somewhere,
someone is
stomping, starving,
caging, stomped,

and maybe acts of cruelty
are all too human,
even children trained
in their commission, wires
strapped to small waists,

and that feels the absolute worst,
though, in the area of treating people
like flies, turning people
into fly fodder, it’s kind of hard to say missiles are better,

just because they don’t have waists.


Here’s a very drafty poem, for Gabriella’s prompt on dVerse Poets Pub to write about war.  I had some further lines about waste, but well, didn’t put them in, as the point seemed clear.  I find it very difficult to write about this type of topic.  

And since I am in rant mode:  in terms of  war (and other things of that nature),  I urge everyone to get out and vote. I also urge everyone to support voting, and to call out voter ID laws for what they are–acts of suppression.  I have worked at polling sites, and can tell you that it is not only hard for some (especially the poor, the old and the young) to get original IDs, but also hard to maintain a current ID, especially if you don’t own a car, have some instability in your residence or don’t maintain an independent home (because you live, for example, with family members.)

Also, I don’t buy this business about there not being a difference in politicians.  I agree that there is a lot of venality in politics, but that is not an excuse not to vote. (And not to take efforts to stay informed.)  There are differences in politicians; your vote does make a difference.   Ask any woman who has ever taken birth control or needed it, or any woman who has been habitually paid less than a man doing the same job (i.e. ask any woman.)  Ask any one, like me, who has been able to have major cost savings relating to children’s health care because of the expansions allowed by the Affordable Care Act. 

Finally, please in the midst of this, consider checking out my new book, Nice, which takes place in the time of the Vietnam War.PP Native Cover_4696546_Front Cover

Explore posts in the same categories: news, poetry, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , , ,

You can comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.

22 Comments on “Somewhere a fly”

  1. Mary Says:

    To use children as weapons is one of the most inhumane acts imaginable. With this, humanity reaches its lowest point, I think.

  2. Gabriella Says:

    Paradoxically war, one of the most human activities, does make us less human.

  3. brian miller Says:

    and maybe acts of cruelty
    are all too human…

    god I can hope not, but that would only be living in denial….to use children as soldiers or weapons, so sad….esp the indoctrination they go through in forming those child soldiers…..

  4. The way war grows on us I find strange.. where are those seeds of hate.. and why is it to easy to fool us into hatred.. the necessary sacrifice of a cause.. and to call it weakness to stand up for diplomacy and compromise.. but maybe the use of children make it easier to control..

    Living in a country that have been at peace for 200 years I would say it does change the way you think, and by the way .. we do not need to register for voting.. we are sent the card that give us the right to vote.. and then you vote. We also vote on Sunday so no employer can stop us from voting.. voting does not exclude prisoners either… so I can see how you can put limitations on voting…

  5. hedgewitch Says:

    Bitter and biting words, which of course are what this subject imposes, enforces and requires, imo. the imagery very personal and felt, and indeed, why does making it personal make it worse or better–it is what it is, and awful and wasteful and just inherently *unnecessary* if people would just get past the level of walnut-brained, quarrelsome apes. Fine writing, k. as well as very important points made post-poem. There are indeed differences in politics and politicians, and being jaded is a huge cop-out and a luxury no one can afford.

  6. mhwarren Says:

    Great writing and great after-writing. True, powerful, necessary. Yes.

  7. Grace Says:

    I felt plucked and dissected as a fly here K ~ “Feeling less human” – I agree with that ~

    As to the elections, we don’t have much to complain about voting here ~ Thank godness, Toronto has a new mayor and in our city too, smiles ~

  8. billgncs Says:

    is identification on airplane suppression too ?

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      Hey Bill,

      I think that is a false comparison actually.

      1. People do not have a constitutional right to air travel. As a result, requirements can be imposed on air travel that could not legally burden a constitutional right

      2. There is a genuine proven safety concern associated with air travel and terrorism and hi-jacking Additionally, there are commercial concerns: air travel companies do not want people scalping air fares, or transferring air fares, in order to take advantage of early purchase reduced tickets. (I honestly don’t know if the FAA or the air companies require ID because air companies are very eager to disallow transfers.) So, my understanding is that there have been instances of false IDs used in air travel to avoid paying late purchase prices, or to avoid identification on a terrorist watch list. In contrast, there has been no proof of any significant incidence of voter fraud related to lack of ID. If there has been proof of significant voter fraud, please alert me to it. (I’ve not seen it.)

      So I believe that the comparison does not truly hold water. However, I do very much appreciate your willingness to engage in debate. Part of my problem with the issue of voter ID is that I find the proponents rather ingenuous. I do not think that they are pushing for voter ID because they are genuinely concerned about fraud. I don’t think they have any proof of that. I think they are pushing for it because they do not want people to vote who might vote against them. But they do not want to admit to that reasoning. I feel like they should persuade people of the benefits of their positions rather than trying to keep them from voting.


      • billgncs Says:

        I hope everyone votes their conscience. I spent a couple years as an IT consultant for a board of elections in a major city. Bad things happen when the stakes are high.

      • ManicDdaily Says:

        Certainly, I understand your concerns. I tend to think that the biggest violations come in the spending and donation area, and not with individuals voting. And it may be that someone plays with the ballot boxes! That’s a whole separate thing in terms of the contractors and the consultants doing something with the actual machinery–and that is not something that would be remedied by voter ID laws. I think the particular voter ID laws are targeted at keeping the young, the aged, and the poor and working poor from voting. I do not see particular evidence that they do not vote their conscience. Do the wealthy vote and make campaign donations in their self-interest? Of course, many do. People do tend to see things through their particular lenses. That is how democracy tends to work. If people do not want a democracy, then they should state that as their position. But not pretend that they are fighting voter fraud because they don’t like the way they think others will vote.

      • billgncs Says:

        I would like to see more turnover in the senate and house, the entrenched guys become so dependent on money that special interests can own them.

        I think ID’s are part of modern life. You can’t go to college without one, you can’t get a job without one and they aren’t hard to get. It’s a reality of this generation.

        In my two years keeping the IT system running some of the things I learned happen – activists go to an old person’s home where they all have alzheimers and register them all and fill out their ballots for them.

        Dead people, and people who move out of a jurisdiction do vote. Ballots from inconvenient wards get lost. Some of it is incompetence, because most board of elections are chock full of appointees who the party wants to reward.

        I guess the question to ask is would you cheat, or look the other way for your political rewards? Lots of people would. It’s important for everyone to vote, but also to ensure the integrity of the vote as well.

        The country is better when the majority of the population is engaged in the election process.

      • ManicDdaily Says:

        Certainly, I understand your point of view. I think many are manipulating the voter registration ID rules to keep people from voting; while there may be some voter fraud, I think the instance is actually remarkably low. Probably the worse example of it was the Florida Board of Elections refusing to do a recount when Bush was elected.

        Obviously, we won’t convince each other on this issue. But what I was very conscious of in my admittedly brief experience as an election monitor is that people’s IDs may not keep up with their current addresses even when they are moving within the same county and district. (I am an example of this–I’ve moved to a different county and changed my registration to conform to my new county, but have not updated my ID–it is ridiculous, but honestly, I’ve been just working all the time and haven’t had time to do the paperwork to update the address on my ID. I have a passport, which doesn’t have an address, and I get bills in my name at my address, but getting a passport takes time and money, and some people do not get a utility bill at their address because, for example, they live with someone else.) So, I really do not think it is so automatic to have an ID that shows your current address, especially if your life is in anyway chaotic (as the lives of many poorer or younger people are.) I hate to say it but for many the voter ID issue is a direct result of Obama being elected. They don’t like him and they can’t believe that anyone else would unless they have some racial or other identification. I don’t think that’s true, but I do think that is a motivating factor in these movements.

        Anyway, thanks for your spirited debate. k.

      • ManicDdaily Says:

        Bill, just after commenting, I happened (and really it was by coincidence) to see the article from The Guardian, a well regarded British newspaper.

      • ManicDdaily Says:

        PS — Bill, please note that I am sure your concerns are genuine, not hypocritical. I am writing out of my sense of the media (Fox news) and certain legislators on this issue. I also think these are instances where the Supreme Court is really out of the loop of reality. I think their position on the Voters Rights Act and Citizens United are not based upon an accurate analysis of the facts and that their resulting arguments are specious. k.

      • ManicDdaily Says:

        Re court–as the immediate rush by Southern states to put in voting legislation has tended to show.

      • billgncs Says:

        here’s one I just saw…

        I haven’t checked the verisimilitude, but from my election days it could be true.

        re the supreme court, did you ever read “The Bretheren”

  9. zongrik Says:

    it’s war, it’s starvation, it’s so much pain and horribleness going on.

    Born to Strife and Contention

  10. grapeling Says:

    I don’t consider it a rant, but do consider it sad that speaking something as simple as the truth is considered so. bill resorts to anecdotes – which are not data – as well as the well-worn canard of false equivalency – which, btw, are classic talking points of a certain political strain – and in so doing, i’ve lost respect for him. oh well.

    as to the poem, the closing lines are particularly hard-hitting. i agree that it’s a difficult subject, which is why I cheated with my pen ~

    • ManicDdaily Says:

      I don’t think you cheated–one has kind of a choice of being graphic or abstract with something like that I think–at least that’s how it feels to me. And I always feel a bit pretentious trying to be graphic. k.

  11. I was going to comment on the poem and say how much I liked it but then I was your footnote about voting. I just want to say that I am 100% behind you. I know that people feel apathetic about the political future of our lands but, please, get off your backside and vote. Wherever you are, you will make a difference, believe me. Thanks.

    Greetings from London.

I'd love to hear from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: