There is an ethical chasm
carved across this great land.
Should any man
abide by these standards,
the principles so clearly expressed
by the one some would call president,
pray that he sees the error of his ways
and follows a more righteous path.
This is my response to dVerse – Quadrille 117 – The Dude Abides,
the prompt from Lisa at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which is to use a form of the word abide in a 44-word poem, with no required meter or rhyme.
As the wall grows higher, some think they understand, for they feel threatened. Something must be done to hold back the masses who threaten their insular worlds, to exclude those with foreign designs and deviant thoughts.
If they truly understood, they would recognize that he is only playing to their fears, as with anything he says or does. Anything to benefit his cronies, and especially himself, while elevating his stature in their eyes.
Walls are his favorite. Whether visible, such as the border wall, or the exaggerated principles meant to exclude outsiders, the imagined threat of those he so easily dupes, or the wall he builds around himself.
Not all are blind to this. There are those who understand completely, those who could tell his followers, “There is nothing behind the wall except a space where the wind whistles, but you cannot see that.”
This bit of flash fiction is my response to Of Houses, Walls, and Whistling WindsDreams, presented by Merril at dVerse ~ Poets Pub. With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit. Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. My flash fiction also meets the additional challenge of hitting the 144-word mark, exactly.
For this prompt, the line to be included is from “Drawings By Children,” by Lisel Mueller. (the complete poem can be found here)
“there is nothing behind the wall
except a space where the wind whistles.”
– Lisel Mueller
I have included the following line, as well. (“but you cannot see that”) Image source: Detroit Free Press
In a vigil to rival All Hallows’ Eve,
skulls of saints will scream in agony
at the slime pigments cast upon
election results by the fool
known as The Clown in Chief
as he casts his scepter as a crown.
The pellucid quest that follows
will underscore the truth
buried by the dim accuracy
of his claims of victory,
granting the solitudes wish
of the multitudes upon his soul.
This poem is my response to Poetics: The charms of Samuel Greenberg, the prompt from Laura at dVerse ~ Poets Pub, which is to write a poem using five of these phrases
from Samuel Greenberg’s “The Pale Impromptu”:
Dim Accuracy ~ Candle salve ~ Consumed moon
Eyes jealousy ~ Fouls deviation ~ Grey life
Hearts brow ~ Lucid farrows ~ Nulling marrows
Painted mirth ~ Pale heat ~ Palmed rose
Pearls from tissue ~ Pellucid quest ~ Royal flesh
Skulls of saints ~ Slime pigments ~ Spiritual songs
Solitudes wish ~ Times chant ~ Yellow dreams
I have used dim accuracy, pellucid quest, skulls of saints, slime pigments, and solitudes wish.
Pen poised above his notepad, the correspondent had stopped taking notes shortly after the president started speaking. He sat at the White House press briefing, confident that little more than inflated accomplishments and no real news would be heard as he thought back on the president’s briefings for the past four years. As he had always done, the president spoke as if campaigning for re-election, loudly proclaiming that nothing that comes from the media is anything more than “fake news,” while little truth could be found in anything that left his own lips.
As the president left the podium and his fellow reporters rose from their chairs, he thought, “From across the room, we look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time. With that telescope reversed, the future will recognize him for the small man that he truly is.”
This bit of flash fiction is my response to Prosery: Telescope of Time, presented by Kim at dVerse ~ Poets Pub. With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit. Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. My flash fiction also meets the additional challenge of hitting the 144-word mark, exactly.
For this prompt, the line to be included is from “Humming Bird,” by D.H. Lawrence. (the complete poem can be found here)
“From across the room, we look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time” – D.H. Lawrence
Oh Mighty Commander, Supreme Leader
of the Greatest Nation on Earth,
we thank you for all that you do for us
as you lead by example, holding yourself
to the highest standard you understand
by mocking a disabled reporter,
mocking reporters injured at protests,
mocking your opponent for the size of his mask
during the pandemic that is sweeping our land.
Hundreds of thousands may have passed, so far,
but your honesty and forthrightness are all
that has saved us from dying by the millions
from this dreaded Chinese plague. It is our hope
that you not be counted among the lost. Instead
we hope that a speedy recovery will return you
to your natural form, so that you may continue
to display the fine character for which you are known.
39 out of 67!
That’s pretty good, right?
Who wouldn’t want to be batting .582?
Wait. You mean 39 of you have COVID-19?
Oh, 36. Three have already died. Well, that’s different.
Hang in there. At least the other 28 are symptom-free.
For now. I’ll bet they’re glad to be in that nursing home with you.
I’m sure the 28 staff who tested positive will be back to work
in no time. After all everyone in town wears a mask. (Wink, Wink)
There’s still time to thank the clown who told you,
over and over, not to worry about this little virus.
Just remember to put an X next his name
when you mail in your ballot.
Breaking news: 29 staff members and 39 of 67 residents at a nursing home two blocks
from my home, in this state capital with no mask requirement, in a state with no mask requirement, have tested positive for COVID-19. Three of those residents have died.
I have nothing but respect for those who are suffering and those who have lost their lives.
I have absolutely no respect for the posse of clowns we refer to as our leaders, those who have failed (and continue to fail, more than six months into the pandemic) to take the appropriate
and timely measures needed to assure that events such as this do not occur.
What is so appealing about this ulcer on the American soul,
this anathema to everything that is great about this country,
that anyone would be willing to encourage it to ooze and fester,
just to see it consume whatever flaws they perceive
to be plaguing our society, even as it sows anger and hatred?
Only when it is excoriated, stripped of all its power,
and removed completely, can there be healing.