poetry is news that stays news

marchantRecently, I spend four hours transcribing an interview with this guy, who’d privileged me with two hours of his time.  The link tells you why he talked to me; below is why you should care.

I defy you not to get chllls, especially if you understand what his title refers to.

The Phoenix Program
by Fred Marchant

Afterwards, the children stood outside
the house of their birth
to witness how it too had to be punished.

When they came of age, they fled to the capital,
lost themselves in the study of history and great works of art,
graduated in swirling carmine robes.

Burdened with a knowledge that murderers
name their deeds after winged deities,
they dream for awhile of claws on the back,

but later they become certain there was
nothing they could have done.
And they are not alone.

It is like this throughout the city.
On each corner you can see them—
leaning as if the vanishing point on their horizon

were other than ours.
They speak quietly only to one another.
They play no instruments, and do not sing.

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