By Byron Haskins

Tyranny to think of shutting me down
My rights from land to hand
I hold a loaded gun to show you
And shout into the face of authority
While I hoard goods with impunity
For wars against wicked futures.

I dance and preen in my camouflage tan and green
Have you not seen me in my black polo,
barefaced in anger and pride at the side of my brothers?
Splashing fool’s blood against the pavement
Nothing can save them; they are shithole trash –
Drive through the crowds; listen to bones smash.

There is no plague upon me.
I just feel weak in the knees and a pounding brow
as I watch my Granny gasp her last.
I did nothing but guard her freedom.
My fever is for liberty.
I struggle for the breath to vomit on my shoes.

I live in Michigan, USA, where, under the good guidance of our Governor, who provided substantive and effective responses, we handled the beginning of the pandemic well.  But she was vigorously opposed by the legislative majority political party machinery to the point of encouraging refutation of safety measures under the guise of liberty. They also removed executive powers to prevent her from acting to save Michigan lives.  Liberty, of course, requires as a prerequisite, personal responsibility, which the leaders of the movement undermine.  My poem is my attempt to put myself into the shoes of such a refuter, who cannot grasp the elements of cognitive dissonance required to make the right decision.  

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Katie Green
1 year ago

Byron…WOW. Taking on the shoes of the persona of the speaker of this poem was no small feat, and you have done it absolutely brilliantly, with unadulterated emotion. This is one of the most profound poems on this site. Absolutely brilliant, kudos, kudos.

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