TERRIBLE GOODNESS

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We legislate our terrible goodness

As if nature didn’t exist

As if she will not open her great maw of

Poetic justice and suck in her

Poisoned air

   As if she will forever

Keep mighty trees propping up

The stars that have died eons ago

  As if she will forever allow

Freedom to be

The barometer of a civilization

   We have failed in our charge

Blind to the vision of bleached and

Scattered bones of an

Earth free to be

Legislated to death

    The bomb in the baby carriage

Tells us

We should all be enslaved

By limitation

    There should be no freedom

To be evil

To the earth  – or

To each other

THE SECRETIVE MS. PEESKINS

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Ms. Peeskins on her favorite perch

Haughty, stretching

Guiltlessly warm

I tell her one day I’ll refuse

To put wood on the fire

See what happens then

She keeps her head to the window

Looking for a bird in the snow

Ideas of catching it melt to fancy

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She’s looking at me now,

Really, I am just caught in her

Tractor-beam, cat scan,

Surveillance of the room;

Goddess of things as they are

She is not the longest lived pet

On this busy country road

Where for many years

Michelin and Goodyear have exacted their

Bloody brand of animal control

Unless a piece of firewood

Falls off the wood carrier

Hitting her, she’s safe

She knows this

But

She won’t tell me

She has put on weight this winter

As if her body swells

With secrets of the house

But not my secret

My apologies for this poem

She hates it when I tell her

Even she is material

Ms. Peeskins cares

Not a whit for poets

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She knows

The difference between

Firewood and those uncut trees

The trees that shade the summer graves

Where the bodies are buried