Summer 2016 - THE POTOMAC

Two Poems

Frank De Canio


Same Old Story

Our modern times are High Noon in reverse.
While Marshal Kane fought Miller's gang alone,
as craven townsfolk hid behind his hearse,
today they'd make a movement to disown
him, fortified by laws they've etched in stone.
What matter if a demagogue holds sway,
should custom bring to fruit the seeds they'd sown?
They're heady from the perfume of the fray.
For notwithstanding all that we have learned
regarding lawlessness and civil rights,
where subjugating others are concerned
a threat of violence works like plebiscites.
It's fun, if what's been tabled isn't turned
around so that its architects get burned.
Then trials without a jury are adjourned
and toughs who promulgated them are spurned
by those same citizens who gave them range
to begin with. For only seasons change.


Civil Blights

The scabs who troubled me the most
in life were not the criminals
in line for a divine riposte,
but those who bank on principles
to keep adversity at bay.
For those I served — at their behest —
to shield their interests, so that they
can live their lives as they deem best,
were quick to flippantly betray
procedures I was drafted for.
What worth a contract that will pay
you back as if they can ignore
the civil rights for which you served,
while they enjoy what's undeserved?

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