Peepers rant in marbled dusk.
I step outside to taste the rain.
Husky yellow overtones
with a hint of toxic metals.
No more Sunday Times flopped
on the kitchen table. No more
TV news brimming with crisis.
The rain pools by the garage.
I should set up a pump to drain
the swamp, flush it to the culvert
where slime creatures lurk and plot.
But first a glass of red wine
to numb me speechless enough
to face the world we’ve created
from matter as primal as sludge
at the bottom of a septic tank.
What of the wars bristling here
and there, barbed and vulgar
and dedicated to the murder
of small and harmless civilians?
What about the unemployed men
smoldering in a hundred nations,
including my own? Living day
to day on a pension shrinks me
to fit the silence that would apply
if the peepers hushed a moment.
The men in charge, expressions plush
with fat, peer over their shoulders
as money flutters on flimsy wings,
looking for a place to alight.
It won’t roost in my windy pines
or on the eaves of my bungalow.
The men in charge allow women
to approach but not to touch.
Like the peepers they’re obsessed,
and like the peepers they dwell
so deeply in the marshland
I’ll never meet them face to face
to see their long rubber tongues
snap the dollars from the sky.