Pathogen, by Bob Beagrie

I am not a silent poet

“Thy subjects blood
With fire and sword
Cries vengeance Lord.”

Parliamentarian motto from ‘The Great Eclipse of the Sun’, 1644.

“Hate begets hate;
violence begets violence;
toughness begets a greater toughness.”

Dr Martin Luther King, 1958

like someone forgot to turn the key, shoot the bolt,
guard the cage door and now its loose, running wild,
raging on pent-up retribution for its incarceration;
not hiding in the undergrowth, a hole in the ground
but behind a look, beneath a word, within a promise
travelling in a crowd forming clusters along chains
of transmission, hitchhiking on breath and bodily fluids,
a stowaway in an attitude, an illegal immigrant riding
the virulent fear of itself gone viral, breaking-out
with a swelling of symptoms: the sharpened accusations
of ‘susceptibles’, slammed doors, raised voices, dog shit
through the letter box, broken windows, burning homes,
a contagion of tears, smoking guns, targeted spot-checks,

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