Robert S. King
A DUTIFUL RULER SPEAKS OF PEACE
The mirror of the reflecting pool sweats.
Steam rises, curls like a burial gown
into Lincoln’s carved lap.
My own sweat is the nation’s water supply,
its holy water, a well I’ve poisoned as well
as those before me, where the wind howls lies
told on so many cold inauguration days,
where truth flees from fists and flags raised
in the blinding fireworks of July.
The blood of my father and children is spoiled,
a green counterfeit I’ve spilled around the world,
a cultural hemlock I’ve forced all peoples to drink
even on this Independence Day.
Why not repeat history?
What else can a nation born of war do?
My lady in the harbor carries a torch
to light the battle fire.
The tanks and troops parade by;
the jets whistle above like birds,
rockets like hawks spread contrails
feathery as American dreams.
These are my arms reaching out to the world.
Bio: One Man’s Profit is Robert S. King’s sixth collection of poetry. He is former Director of FutureCycle Press