The Realm of Hungry Ghosts

(Ferguson, Missouri, August 2014)

The measured response of empire
is death—war against war;
attack against attack; violence
to violence. Murder. Revenge.
Death. The measured response of

empire is insanity. The peace of
empire is reloading the gun. It
is the realm of hungry ghosts,
shiny new helmets in the void.

In this other land, it’s borders
beaten back in endless war,
here everyone is learning to be
human. We have learned here
that hope and certitude have
never met. Never will. Hope
won’t bargain with terrorists.

Everybody here is learning how
to be human. It’s a slow go for
a rainy day. A lull in the killing.

The measured response
of being human first is anger.
Then the defeat of certitude.

In the realm of hungry empire
certitude is a press conference;
peace is reloading the gun.
Being human is the starved thing.

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