I declare

When you’re still playing with fire
at the end of the night,
the end of your poker stick a coal itself,
you might smash down on the biggest log,
innumerable pieces sent
into radial flight.

Russia has entered Syria.
US bombs keep flying.
Japan renounces its Peace
Constitution to no fanfare.
Finally, the people of the west see pictures
—a mere shard of what our governments wreak
in our name, while we sleep—
as hundreds of thousands unarmed
rush borders, everywhere.

Hungary sends a chain gang to unroll a spool
of razor wire down the border.
It recoils.

I declare, this is war.

Coalitions of willing and unwilling
coerced and oppressed
and the innocence of systems
in chaos: no one’s intention:
“I was just trying to make some money.”

Do what is expected. Seriously,
whose responsibility is it to stop
this war, or the last one, or the last?

I declare, this is World War III
and has been since 1945.
The dead grass under the stones
of the fire circle have been burning
invisibly and we are too tired,
too tired to notice
or make sense—the coals seem to have faces
but then they shift
—monsters, in miniature,
slow-mo cameo
of collapse…

A border is just a line on a map
until someone gets killed over it.

I declare peace.

I declare peace now like the minister
on Peace Day in the park
in the center of town with his cadence
of passion paced and love lilting, his vision
so utterly other, how he
spellbound us, as we stood in circle,
and invisible fire spread beneath our feet.


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