dancing on anthills

dancing on anthills
by David Jonathan Newman
Debaser Of the Elements, we forgive you we forgive you
corrosion and corruption impatience and disruption
every muscle fiber, every sinew and bone in your body. every sympathetic nerve reaction
aftershocks in my name, aftershocks aftershocks in my name
what drives you to make such mistakes?
in what god’s name do you pray to such falsities?
fall prey to such woe?
he makes a soap box with his bare hands, just for you to stand on it and slit your wrists?
dancing on anthills
you know not what you do
who says you should be forgiven for anything?
who says?
yet we forgive you, don’t we.
the choir of integrity,
the army of rectitude,
standing fast against the onslaught of that which breaks our hearts with such voracity that one can’t help but feel as though there is nothing left but this moment here now, these mere seconds where we find out who is made out of concrete and who is made out of copper.

0 thoughts on “dancing on anthills

  1. It’s important in this poem to identify who Debaser of the Elements is, who we are, and who my is. I think the Debaser is humanity, or that part in all of us which is only self-serving and therefore debasing of everything else. We, then, are the better part, “the choir of integrity, the army of rectitude,” who endeavor to prevail against our own self-perpetrated ruin. The “my” is that god, or principle, trying to stay in power but compromised by the wrong-doer inflicting damage in “my name.” Because of its double personality, humanity’s prospects are not good: for our forgiving ourselves, we find we are dancing on anthills of self-destruction. But the poet seizes “this moment here now” as our salvation, where from second to second we assess who among us and what part of us is made of the stronger, worthier substance, and presumably build on that. A strong metaphorical call to action to rectify human nature on an ongoing basis, if that’s possible.

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