there was dust everywhere


There was sand and grime on every building,  

On the windows,  inside the camp


It was hard to tell how much was from the climate

and how much was from time


The last transmission was four months ago

it took them that long to reach the base 


When they finally found people, huddled in the basement

they were surprised to find them alive, almost cheerful


So, they asked questions- but not a word 

how long had they been there,

what happened to the mission,  where were their escape pods?   Silence 


One of the older men,  eyes grey and cloudy

stepped forward,  trying to move his parched lips,  not a sound  

instead wrote words on a dry erase board


happy to see you 

Something took the ships away

they were very fast  




thanks to BookReader for the title



If you swallow it
Marinate your bicuspids in grating silica grit
Sand your molars in desert waste
And chalk your canines in alluvium clay


You’re sure to tongue it
Roll that slab of meat over the course grain
Until it is dry, and dehydrated it cracks
Until exsiccated, it dies

The censor does this with his eyes,
And that voice which you cast your debates
Your arguments,
Your dissertations,
Your jokes,
Your witty social parlor gabs
Will whither disassembly left and right
Content death and meaning
Wit and Light die in that tomb together
Mummified, stratified, buried together


Have you ever heard a thunderbolt voice your name?

Give me two shakes on the lightning coil
Down in Earth where it she rumbles
Twin machines both steel and steal
Stars who burn in perpetual dark
Worshipers on the lightning coil

And what thunder voices your name?
A goon, a goblin, or is it all the same?
Passages framed with candescence
Creeping slaves on weeping fire
Worshipers with the lightning coil

Twenty fractals fracturing skin
Broken limbs tumbling lime
Gears that creak and spin out bile
Snapping ropes; electric spires
Worshipers at the lightning coil

Give us this our shaking deaths
And forget us we trespassers,
As we trespass amongst you,
Lead us to incineration,
and deliver us cancellations
For thine is thy checkbook,
And ours our wheedling nannies.
Worshipers pray the lightning coil

Poison struck across the sky
Giddy children find a liar
Stars that sing in agonized luster
Unable to break their atomic calenture
Worshipers on the lightning coil

Yes, the thunder speaks their name
Yes, it is all deep oblivion
Yes, it all ends the same
Moths can’t escape from their coruscation
Flames of ancient, incandescent scintillation

Nor can I
Nor can you
Worshipers of the lighting coil

Hollyhocks and Hibiscus,
Who can tell the difference?
Mulch under our treads,
Diesel up above
And dirt and dust Below

Waiting for a miracle

Waiting for rain:

Soft whispering on today
It is strange, it’s not right
Hear the echo, hear it again
Soft in the daylight

In the lexiconical dirge
Where our voices aren’t heard
Hear the echo, hear it again
Do you have any words?

Prayers do nothing, our voice is out
Scattered relics hum near
Hear the echo, hear it again
Laughter predates the fear

Hear the echo, hear it gain
Let’s hope it wasn’t in vain


Thanks to etouffee for the challange.

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