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On Fire and Ice. These Are My Words.

Dead mockingbirds and darkness. 

Hearts of plastic, wax, glass, and stone.

Bruising black and battered blue.

Split, sliced black, white, and brown whilst we step forth every day in gray.

Murky, muddied waters.

Someone douse the flames.

Pleading.

Thunder, lightning, rain. 

Is there anything new under the firestorm sun? 

Uncertainty. 

Fear. 

Fill in the blank space. Make your story fit.

Intersubjective, existential.

Intersection.

Segregation.

Invisible.

Glaringly obvious.

Unmistakable.

Indistinguishible.

Anguish, anger.

Language.

Act.  React.  Repeat.

Stakes high.  Inhibitions low. 

Familiarity.  Reality.

Old and new.

Perception.

Story.

Yours. Mine.

Different.

Shared.

Same.

Ensnared.

Caught.

Tringulation.  Strangulation.

Betwixt and between victim, perpetrator, bystander. 

Suffocating.

Helpless.

Hopeless?

Scared.

The staccato of bullet spray.

Pray.

Hearts ablaze next to frozen. 

Ice in veins.

Red blood runs through us all. 

Scarlet stains streets.

Spilled for what?

Who?

Boots, bandanas, buttons.

Annihilating or defending?

The prose of protection.

Masks?  Hoods.

Choked.  Choked up. 

Crossing lines, not coming back.

Can’t turn back now.

Don’t turn around.

Run.

STOP.

Deafening screams.

Charred, smoldering, burning.  Inside and out.

White hot rage.

Shattered windows, broken souls.

Justice.  Where is it?

What is it?

For whom?

Sons screaming.  Mothers’ hearts in anguish.

Hurt.

Fractured trust.

Tears and terror.

Gas, shields, and guns.

Too close to home or at a safe distance?

Discomfort.

Just now or for always?

Reality.

Revelatory rage.

Pointed, directionless.

Grief.

Overwhelming grief.

Groupthink grows.  Swells. Overcomes.  Swallows.

Conscious thought shuts down.

Blind sheep.

Crossing lines.

Danger in dissent.

Double jeopardy standing out. 

Cost of not.   

Insideout kristalnacht? 

Stand, speak, or sit? When, where, and how?

Assumptions about quiet, mistaken and misconstrued. 

Silence and screaming. 

Calm.  Storm.

Obliterated order. 

Oblique view, incomplete knowledge.

Stillness.

Cry.

Peace, peace. Hush. Stillness and peace.

Conscious. Aware.

Contribute. Come together. Clean up.

A mess. All in ruin.

Aftermath.

Rocked. Shocked, shaken, stirred.

Time marches on.

Choke back.

Spill.

Say.

Declare and demarcate.

In or out.

Misstep, misspeak.  You can’t undo.  There is no repeat.

Say something.  But anything? 

Right thing?  Wrong thing?  What?

Risk.

A shared narrative regardless of motivation, belief,  reason, or rhyme?

Popularity.  Polarization.

Threat.

Trending. Out of step, out of touch?

Where do you march?

Forced to choose sides.

Landmines surround.

Playing cards?

Leveraging tragedy?

“Because everyone else is.”

Why?

Power, privilege, party line.

Pretend.

Ignore.

Run to, run from.

Stay back, stay alive.

Stand up, sit down.

Where is your seat?

Clear.  Obvious. Blurred.

Seeing villians with no nuance.

Confirming your own story.

Bias.

Bad guys. 

Out of focus.

Out of touch.

Get to.

Have to.

No words. 

Noise.

Nightly news.  Narrative.

Demonizing innocent.

Disparity.

Disenfranchisement.

Can’t win for trying? 

Do we all lose?

Unlike.  Unfollow.  Assumptions fair or not?

Everyone seen.  Everyone heard. 

Silence is communication.

No escaping.

Snap judgment delivered.  Sharp, swift, and complete.

Action before knowing.

Action without understanding.

Not interested. Don’t care.

Already decided.

Dissention.

Choose, watch, and think.

Charity?

Words are cheap.

Words change.

How do I use my voice? Is it my place to speak?

Profiled, defiled. 

Pictures that haunt.

Sounds you can’t unhear.

Tragedy.

Rape.

Reveal.

Broken.

Heal.

Systemic frustration.

Swept up by the zeitgeist. 

What is hollow?  What is trite?

Search for understanding.

Adding or detracting?

Shame and should.

Stages, big and small.

Skewed snapshots

A Game.

Winners and losers.

Playing a card?

Widening gaps.

Who is pretending?  What is real?

Read the room.

Read. The. Room.

What room are you in?

Where do you stand?

Permissions unknown. 

Step. Stay. Mute. Say.

Piles of ashes.

Buried.

Unsafe.

Humanity stripped bare, not hiding what is and has been.

What forever more will be?

Dare to wish, hope, dream? Or history on repeat?

Questions and answers–easy and hard.

More Questions.  No answers.

Move forward or pause?

How? 

How long?

Solutions—simple, complex.

For richer and poorer.  In sickness and health. 

Our world is on fire.

These are people. 

We are people.

These are my words.

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June 1, 2020

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