The Wasteland

After all the people shouting

at viewers who already agree and are

galvanized like nails

waiting to be hammered

as if tines on a tuning fork

yet somehow out of key

locked in false times

under their thumb.

After all the people shouting

from broadcast towers

in places we’ve never been;

people we’ve never met

tell us what is up and send us to

our phones so we can shout

back into the void and

witness our own ratings fluctuate like lies

upon the waves.

After all the people shouting

it will be nice to squat

broken in the cinders

and try to figure out how to

survive in silence.

Because I cannot buy milk

with digital hearts and thumbs.

And whatever followers there were

will have been cast to the ends

as a bag of splinters

in gale-force, straight-line,

or cyclone winds.

Sure, my kids will be crying,

hungry for food.

Soft whimpers and stomach cramps

in the night. Searching for sleep

and remembering warm Christmas

and knowing that the violence

of a mob fighting for Black Friday tv’s

was just a harbinger.

A peephole in the dam.

What we were

and what we thought we were

were very different things.

But that watering hole was unnatural.

The stream will run again.

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