The Poetry of Mary K O'Melveny




 …El Paso (this time)

This is a video game gone quite wrong.
This is a prayer turned to a theme song.
This is a mental health problem.  A strong
response will allow us to move along.

This is a city where migrants have long
been welcome, in serape or sarong,
where border crossers shop for daylong
Walmart bargains—our US torch song.

They sell weapons there too that stoke real fears—
bumpstocks and bullets and bandoliers.
But apparently all is not as it appears,
even as these are checked out by cashiers.

The enabler-in-chief and all his peers
report that we must cover up our ears.
The silencing of rifles would set back years
of cold cash from NRA financiers.

Republicans, whose loyalty is owed
to makers of shiny things that explode,
hide from the press as the mark is towed
while innocents reap what their greed has sowed.

Where bones have shattered and blood has flowed,
these folks blather past each grim episode.
Their words are camouflaged in secret code
while still more angry white men lock and load.




"THIS IS NOT A GUN"  was published in New Verse News on

Saturday, August 10, 2019.

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