Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2012 v11n1
print version

Essence and Justification
     To supply the motivation for the essence and justification of terror,
     its necessity, its limits.
          —V.I. Lenin

There is a machine at the end of the block.
It is a child playing jacks, the wide sweep of the hand
like the closeting of a bird’s wing.

A tree chances a dropped branch
hugging a power line to the ground; the man cutting
the branch aligns with a desire for removal

of possibility. Walk the sidewalk, unafraid.
You construct eventuality. The machine exhibits
lust and in its shadow anthills arise.

This night men will enter a house
and take willing participants. The fiction
is participation, though everyone has a part.

With daylight a woman in a sea green dress
assumes herself conspicuous. She pauses before
certain houses, scratches a leg, shows some skin.    

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