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poetry

Homeless Genies

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The helicopter levels with the second storey.

Underlit by searchlight, rotors wheel within a wheel.

 

Beacons spray the corrugated metal window shade;

In peephole-filtered demi-glow: chafed lamps and scattered safehouse bedding.

 

Homeless genies: hopelessly miraculous. Dispensing wishes

As garrulously as voting rights. In hiding. Public-eyed.

 

Drifting bands of consequences: no one knows

Their lineage, only their shadowy immanence: the crashed power grid.

 

Their parents’ world was harshly lit: just one of causes.

Just wars. Allegiances. Under God in hiding. Republican.

 

In digital photos now, they pose on boxes in black hoods.

Their fingertips are wired. They detonate in ATMs.

 

Thumbs hooked in the waistband of underpants

They yank to the rectory floor; their gods are everywhere.

 

The president hurries from hangar to hangar

Delivering news conferences only joint chiefs attend.

 

The doors are closed, the coffins arranged

As carefully as pornography. In private, the lids are opened.

 

He breathes on the Kevlar. He revives the army.

But in public, in parades, in windowsill shrines, they remain remembered.

Three Dots