Gesture

The marchers rally behind him.
His left hand flashes a peace sign.
The right brandishes
a sign like a sword:
“War is Fascism
Fascism is War.”
A reporter asks a
question. He sidesteps.
Instead he parodies
the President:
“Without peace
there is no security.”
That night he pulls into his parking lot.
A Lincoln straddles two spaces,
including his.
The street lamp illuminates
a Trump Pence bumper sticker.
He keys the Republican’s car.

Her bumper sticker proclaims:
“Visualize world peace,”
which should surprise no one
who sees her driving the
tie-dyed Tesla with
peace sign on the hood.
At the Elemental Fern
a waitress spills a latte down
her $500 Reformation coat.
She rattles the table with her fist
Screams for the manager,
demands the waitress’ dismissal,
abandons her check.
No tip.

“The peace of the Lord,” he says
as he clasps the hands of the couple
in the next pew. “Peace of the Lord,”
he repeats to the grandmother and
the soldier and the smoker with
nicotine stains enveloping her hands.
In a moment he will lead
a reading from Isaiah,
“They will beat their
swords into plowshares,
their spears into pruning hooks;
nation shall not lift up
sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war.”
His wife stayed home,
unwilling to show off
the black eye and bruises
adorning her cheek.

We demand peace from nations
but ignore the
consuming rage
within.

© 2018, poem and illustration, Phillip T. Stephens

Author:

The focus of "The BeZine," a publication of The Bardo Group Beguines, is on sacred space (common ground) as it is expressed through the arts. Our work covers a range of topics: spirituality, life, death, personal experience, culture, current events, history, art, and photography and film. We share work here that is representative of universal human values however differently they might be expressed in our varied religions and cultures. We feel that our art and our Internet-facilitated social connection offer a means to see one another in our simple humanity, as brothers and sisters, and not as “other.” This is a space where we hope you’ll delight in learning how much you have in common with “other” peoples. We hope that your visits here will help you to love (respect) not fear. For more see our Info/Mission Statement Page.

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