C.N.P Poetry 

  • Cathexis Northwest Press

Evil Accordion

By: Paul Iasevoli







Tonight I learned a new term

on the Nightly News as the words

“concertina wire” crawled

above pixelated pictures

of kids caged on a cold, high plain;

their mothers waiting

behind fences blowing

kisses through hurricane mesh—


a substance so porous I wondered how

it could stop the savage winds

of a storm the Taíno named

for their god of evil.


Then, in the flip of one quick bite,

my mind turned back

to that razor-wired concertina,

expecting it to play

a love song, a lullaby,

something soothing,


but this was no instrument of music.

Rather a manifest of metallic malice.




Paul Iasevoli holds a Master’s degree in Latin-American literature. He lives on the Suncoast of Florida where he writes stories and poems, tucks them into wine bottles, and tosses them into the Gulf of Mexico. Some have resurfaced in journals like Deep South Magazine, High Shelf Press, Cathexis, and City.River.Tree.


Artist statement for "Evil Accordion":


While watching the nightly news, I realized how a linguistic euphemism can serve to mollify the reality of children held in cages at the US-Mexico border. A heart-wrenching image of a mother attempting to kiss her son through a hurricane fence was also part of the video report— hence, this poem unfurled.