Steel Butterflies

Murder’s our hobby, the daily treat allowing
delight of outrage, the pity at futility; the
self-righteous plea for puppies and sweets,
each vindication a repeated need for belief:
the strangling circles of defeat reason’s
barren reward, our illusion of safe places where
wars take shape then form in foreign lands, while

We, better and more deserving, untouched
in sterile domesticity until the broken
demonstrate their shattered realities; engaging these
officious and jaded, the now guilty bystander
declaiming ironies: steel butterflies freely fly
outward bound, draping rainbows
of self-regard deceiving each in desecrated ground

Where no sound exists but silences submit to myths,
legends deceive differences and delineations
of unerring sight from those who wish escape
into prison: to worship
the dictator’s heel beyond cartoon perspectives,
come around to witness themselves beginning again
no further flights into fantasy despoil the view

(©)Dean Baker

“An inspired set of poems. Dean gets to the essence of a subject.”

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You can be murdered anywhere, but
you’ll always die in Congress or in Parliament.

From a lack of care or indifference
to what’s said and done by everyone expecting
salvation be a ladder to Paradise, until
the stairs to another life declining repair
prove they lead nowhere but upside down.

Change will come eventually you think,
forgetting the war ongoing in everything
where slaughter is observed religiously,
statistics carved in counterfeit
register complaint surreptitiously proud.

To serve the perverted ego’s lazy appetite
for the curve of constancy, no matter what
it takes to frame familiar certainty:
mistaken for the truth still boasting loudly
for release from the cage of incessant proof.

In our recalcitrant lives something despairs,
training us for extinction as the prize.

©Dean Baker


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