billy goat hill

i was reminded by
the totems of time
that hold up my mind
of two hunks of cold grey stone
where we sat stoned
watching fresh steel soar
cutting the sky without consent
bleeding oracles foretold
and you said this city is
dying dead death
eyes fogged by routine
unaware of
the other side of
the truth
the side that’s not so nice to hear
the one that says
you, too,
are responsible
for this mess
for lives led on sidewalks
for roofs forcibly removed
for concrete coffins carved
for weeks without warmth
for months that look like years
on spirits beaten
and faces distressed
you, too,
are responsible
for this mess

published by forum literary magazine, spring 2019