Borderland

— Amy Meier

This morning and every morning
as the sky turns from pewter
to robin’s egg across Texas,
New Mexico, Arizona, and California,
Juan Chavez Serrano, Miguel Ruiz Pintor,
Cipriano Martinez Rios and others like them
report for work enclosing new housing communities
with seven foot stucco walls and wrought iron
fences whose primary purpose is to keep
themselves, and other like them, out.

The new United States president sees the opportunity
to extend this idea, fulfill his campaign  promise to
build a great wall, it’s gonna be really great,
folks, its gonna be amazing, he says.

I hear this threat dressed up like a promise,
picture a four state 1500 mile gated community,
imagine Juan, Miguel, Cipriano and others
like them hired for border wall building,
noting as they drive the posts where
ICE prowls, marking territory,
observing where ICE has no presence.

Each day they fasten sections of American
made steel, code mark the bases so the
unofficial night crew on the southern side
of this construction project will know the safest,
the most secure locations to set up the ladders,
throw up the grappling hooks and dig the tunnels.

 

Clap for Tinkerbell

— Amy Meier

Poor and black becomes drug addicted criminal,

young male refugee becomes terrorist recruit.

self-fulfilling prophesy becomes reality,

also called the Tinkerbell Effect for extra irony.

Yet I have heard there’s never been an audience that

sat on its cynical hands to watch poisoned Tinkerbell die.

The audience always claps, Tink is always saved, and we know why.

Have you ever seen a young child cry

just because another child was crying?

Ever caught an infectious laugh?

We are all born attached. We remain connected,

continue to hope for understanding by at least

one other person, continue to wish for happy endings.

These days, with fairy dust in short supply, Tinkerbell

weakened by that slick old trick, divide and conquer,

it’s tempting to allow our disconnect to widen the divide.

Threat or promise, if self-fulfilling prophesy comes true

because we expect it to, for my part, I promise

to find people whose understanding is so far from mine,

I hesitate to share even the same air as though it might be poisoned.

I promise to take a deep breath, open the dialogue,

keep the conversation going, rediscover

how underneath the attitudes, the insults and the rhetoric,

we are deeply and irrevocably connected each to the other.

 

Note: Self-fulfilling prophesy Urban Dictionary definition:Causing something to happen by believing it will come true.

 

Note to Self

— Amy Meier

If the 2016 election process felt as though
a proctologist was reaming through
the dark and fearful places of our country
and ourselves, if you have begun to question
whether an 18 month colonoscopy is really
necessary for our form of democracy,
may I suggest you step outside
where black spotted yellow butterflies
ride highways of air currents through the sky,
where migrating swallows fly a strobe
of light and shadow.
While you accepted voluntary thrall
to 24 hour news do you recall if
you had any direct contact with
the gradual and subtle dawn,
or sunset reflected in a pool,
perhaps, moonlight
on a silent street at night?
Note to self:
the focused lens magnifies
both ugliness and beauty.
There is always a choice.
Choose beauty.

 

Hot Enough to Cook Eggs on the Sidewalk

— Amy Meier

103 degrees at 11 AM,
90 degress at 6 PM.

Under a blue unrelenting sky

we go to ground

motionless, in hiding
from the tawny sun

like furtive prey

active
only at dawn and after dusk,

day after day after unchanging day.

 

We adjust to
climate changed seasons,

extremes of heat and drought, then

in the night with no warning

the temperature

drops.

We waken to

subtle chill of autumn,

torpor slipping from our shoulders,
step outside, witness

the cloud filled sky,

the covenant of

rain.