Play it by hand and by heart—–
Through static, censored radio, some tambourine
jangles, interprets a crayon illustration
one child scrawled after his village
was wiped out.
The tanks, the shattered slats,
they are all re-assembled here where
this crayon, this simple tambourine
designates the origins of no particular
culture. That’s why the child sticks with us:
eyes, shiny olives hardly suggesting deeper torment.
Instead, cocoa skin goes running wearing imported
light cotton, a stained glass window array—–
Pinks which gesticulate, buttery yellow, startling
purple and Indian turquoise, dispatched as wings
across this barbed wire play yard.
Yes, where such breathing frequents,
little cymbals begin tinkling, rings for passing
palm unto palm ‘til the crayon, the child
pulses brush fire amid jingles for soda.
Listen eavesdropper, hear what undercurrent trembles?
It’s cause ‘n effect strumming in and out of each other,
a million tambourines whispering, a million crayons
squeaking, scratching mere paper to resurrect life
across the power, the power
falling like his city.
Stephen Mead, a resident of NY is a published artist, writer, maker of short-collage films and sound-collage downloads. His latest P.O.D. amazon release is an art-text hybrid, “According to the Order of Nature (We too are Cosmos Made)”, a work which takes to task the words which have been used against LGBT folks from time immemorial. In 2014 he began a webpage to gather links of his poetry being published in such zines as Great Works, Unlikely Stories, Quill & Parchment, etc., in one place: Poetry on the Line, Stephen Mead.