POETRY: Whole Wheat, Decaf Black, A Morbid Curiosity by David Citino

Whole Wheat, Decaf Black, A Morbid Curiosity by David Citino

We study the paper, fingers
darkening with the stinking ink
of the daily news,
as Dad bangs Mommy’s head
against the bedroom wall,
the thud like coming thunder,
as baby’s shaken until
the crying stops,
as the sniper’s scope X’s-out
another enemy of the tribe,
all for ethnic cleaning,
as, at the mall, boys dressed
in street colors change
forever the face of other boys
with semi-automatic rage,
as women of the village
bind the girl, legs spread
wide, the oyster cut
from its delicate shell,
so she can know holiness.

It’s not that we relish
the blood, as the Romans did—
is it? Somewhere, someone
knows a suffering too terrible
for words, nearly.
Thank God it’s not us.
There but for fortune.

Give us the details,
What was she wearing?
Did she struggle, weep, plead?
And then what happened?

 

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