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C.N.P Poetry 

  • Writer's pictureCathexis Northwest Press

A Peaceful Country; Social Media; Mosquitoes Will Inherit The World

By: Ian Randall Wilson

A Peaceful Country

Now that the report is in  the nation in all its nakedness  mouths the platitudes. Is this the time  to speak of what must be done when butterflies are flying  like orange comets in the day? A bird in the hand, well, the birds are chirping, too.  From the trees, so much noise  it's impossible to sleep.  I had hoped to settle  into this piece of time,  to assemble all the puzzle parts  and know what was what.  It seems the fox  will kill the hens this year  and escape once more,  the coop a mess  of feathers and blood.  You may ask why no one stops it.  You may ask how the earth turns on its bright axis  while those concerned toss salt  over the left shoulder  for luck, and the rest  in hopes the demons  will not pursue them.  The time has come  to change your life-- Have you heard that whopper?  Old beliefs, like justice  for all, like a hand  reaching from the crowd  grasps for help and not to steal your purse.

Social Media

Oh Twitter jeremiad, you have not yet achieved the compulsory competency of the madman on the rock. Your words are misaligned and the nuns who taught you spelling hide their heads in shame. If they could but discipline you  with their stiff rulers,  beating your knuckles  until your hands stop typing  and you put  away your devices to look up  from the screen. How bright the world might be. The sunrise is singing, birds, a chorus of hope. The branches of the old oak wave like store greeters  welcoming you home. Peace is there in aisle 9 and harmony in the back row next to faith, on the bottom shelf, which I'm sorry to report is being discontinued next month. Yet the soft green meadow grass calls out for you to lie on it. Be reborn in a puff of cloud. If you'll only rest in the forest cradle beneath the spangled light of the world. The doe in the woods is staring, no one move.

Mosquitoes Will Inherit The World

On the last walk around the last garden,  the sun blisters, turning  all the formerly temperate  into sand. That's a little taste  of the times ahead, sweet boy,  the future that's more expensive than the weight of earth in gold. Those two degrees of warming was wishful thinking by the counsel of platypodes. We're headed toward five but by that time, they'll be gone, so why bother change-- I mean, won't the superheroes save us like they always do? Meanwhile, I carry my reclaimed recycled  repurposed reprocessed shocking  pink nylon sack  like a circus strongman. I stack my empties  in the big blue bin out back for the homeless pick through and carry off what they can sell. To those who will listen,  I preach the empty language of word balloons. I tell myself, I am doing something,  dumping the used coffee grounds  on the mulching bed as an offering  to the environmental gods.  I tell myself, I am doing  something, culling food scraps for the compost heap so the microbes can feast. I cut down on meat  and don't run the air-conditioner  in the heat.  All glory  to the penitent of sweat!  Mine is but the cheapest sacrifice,  no better than paste jewelry. The way people say, "Sorry for your loss" or "he's gone to a better place"  or best of all: "Everything happens for a reason." Tell that to the Cryptic Treehunter who will hunt no more in the forests of Brazil. Tell that to Miami, when it drowns. All our gems are forsaken. The obituary for the topsoil  has been written.  When there are no dogs left,  who will listen  to the earthworms sing?


Ian Randall Wilson's fiction and and poetry have appeared in a number of literary journals including the North American Review, The Gettysburg Review and Alaska Quarterly Review. A short story collection, Hunger and Other Stories, was published by Hollyridge Press. His first poetry collection, Ruthless Heaven, was published by Finishing Line Press. He has an MFA in Poetry and in Fiction from Warren Wilson College, and is on the fiction faculty at the UCLA Extension. By day he works at Sony Pictures in Los Angeles.


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