Twice, a poem by J.M. Wagner

October 25, 2021

by J.M. Wagner

Handbook 1, 16.13 (2015)
the worth of souls

I.
Just when you think there is
a space
softer
safer
A people who grasp
admonition
rejection
persecution

Just when you shift your stance
Ajar

for air
for breath

Incrementally exposed

Fingertips floating from
knee pit depressions
Limbs extending from
fetal positions
that safeguarded
defended
the soul

Supple silence is
shattered

A hammer descends
from on high
A thundering blow
(two to be exact)
of love
of compassion
A thrashing of words
not nearly cruel enough

The naked spirit
gored to the core
blatantly bored
A stake in your robust
spring
your trust
your dream

For your
own good

II.
We’ve bared true selves
our old testament God
our moral rectitude
our virile creed
at a dear price

of piano lessons and choir practice
of red, yellow, and blue
of popcorn popping on sweet
blossomed trees

Asking and nothing is given
Seeking and all is unkind
Knocking and it remains fastened

All is not possible

Suffer the children

The menace of pungent lavender
The dawn before the dark
and the darker
In the two thousand and eighth year of the reign of twelve
In the two thousand and fifteenth year of the reign of twelve

The lull
a prolonged quiet
a propitious quiet

You mistook it
for softness,
for kindness
for love
gentle, meek, and mild

Recantations cannot restore
these wounds
our remedy is nearly always worse
than our cure
The leopard cannot change
its spots

Fool me twice.

Posted In:

Receive the Affirmation e-newsletter with content like this in your inbox!

Leave a Comment