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on the television; blood has dried, on the streets it flows like a river
in the markets; woven rugs wrap the bones, muffle the screams and hide wide eyes
on prayer mats; raw knees, supplicant palms and white rings where the weight of anxiety has pressed
on the radio; debates on water rage, as injuries to the cricket team capture attention ahead of their own war in the caribbean, amid salt-white beaches, murders and coconut husks

beneath the strains of yet another idol go-to-boy, foundations shake, heaving saffron dust plumes – car roofs sink with fallen angels. the artful orphans have given up crying, the audio wallpaper curling from the walls, can’t you tell?

there is no answer to the question ‘why?’ for there’s no longer the question
with bodies collapsing like it’s a welcome end, hiding in boxes, the media have a knack for fog, though this smoke is real

they’re going to pull out we’re told, going to pull down the heavens and break heads with clouds
crushing families in basra and baltimore with the very same atmospheric pressure
piss on the fires, kick a bucket of sand and burn your candy bar wrappers, you’ll still leave embers glowing in a thousand stomachs, tiny haters waiting for a new wind, fresh and strong, to blow in

who do you imagine is going to plant trees in the holes so doves can build nests?
who are you going to pay to lay the roads in Noah’s olive branches and tie buildings together with future string?

it’s hard to hear the echo of babylon, but strain we must, for butchery’s not dead and it won’t leave just because we ‘re drowning it out with white noise and empty talk

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