Posted tagged ‘how could we have done it poem’

If the Statue of Liberty Could Speak, Maybe

December 29, 2014

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If the Statue of Liberty Could Speak, Maybe

We won’t torch her,
they said, and I admit
I felt relieved, for there was just
this smell–
even after the months of rubble smoking
at my feet
which, despite all the steel
and people, smoldered
of plastic mainly–
an ingredient in so much
these days–

Still, I picked it up, even
though my nose was, as it were,
de-sensitized–
Some hum

that made me insecure
in what they said and so I held on tightly
to my own, which, is
affixed to my hand anyway and copper—

probably not
the copper they use–you know, sliced
into electrodes–

(Collar it what you will–
re-name rape as rectal
hydration–both begin with r
and smell as sweet)–

But did nothing more–
just stood there–
not
enough-

So, sick now
to my stomach, sick
at heart, sick even unto
my grey-green soles, to the depths
of my scrolled harbor.

There’s a certain foulness doesn’t go away
closed up–a fetid
mess that will in darkness
feed on–its seep poisoning
even as we pretend
like children playing peekaboo,
that we can make the real flee
that we can make a lie fly
that we can make all better just
by covering
our eyes.

****************************

A poem I wrote a few weeks ago I am posting as a second poem for With Real Toads open link night.  The image belongs to New York City and is from the New York City Coat Drives campaign.  It is an image that I saw being photographed in Washington Square Park about twenty-eight years ago–so beautiful I think–on a very very hot afternoon, the woman–a Statue of Liberty impersonator in green make-up, sweating.