Poems Page 10


This is worse, that wolves should reign,
Wolf disposer, autocrat,
Wolf the punisher of pain,
Wolf the bane, the bureaucrat

All shall come beneath his chair
Show the tonsure, smooth his fur -
Contradict him who shall dare?
Carnivore, the learned cur

Wolf of jealous eyes, of teeth,
Jaw and ears and stinking tail,
Wolf who pins the lamb to eat,
Judges by the lamb's entrails

Wolf debater, arbiter,
Wolf for whom the bailiffs pray,
Innocents' devourer -
Call the court on Judgment Day

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Animals who punch and pull,
With skin and flesh their hands are full,
Tear each other limb from limb,
While through the darkness monsters swim -
Who'd believe they're not alone?
One's on top and one is prone,
Demons brawling on a slab
Without a gun or knife to stab,
Hands and knees and fists to kill
If they've the strength to do such ill -
What's the issue? One exists,
The other too, and both have fists,
Up above and underneath
Claws of envy, craving's teeth

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Chimeric riders, steeds are they,
Ursine mules and bears that bray,
A sleepy-eyed tremendous swine
Strides a mule with legs like mine,
An eagle with a human chest,
Human buttocks - all the rest -
Maybe Goya's fantasies,
A fever dream, not what you'd see
If you were sober, sane and well,
Still alive, not sunk in hell;

Snap awake, look again
At bestial women, brutal men,
The rippling and mutating shapes
Of swine and asses, wolves and apes,
The eagle's cruel indifferent stare:
Superbia astride - beware!

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