Sestina (American Darwinist)
by Nathan Parliament
Mother quietly said, “God bled to heal.”
(She hoped my mended body might speak truth
and new veracity could free me of this dizzy wheel
as it tramples its way down busy streets
that would lead me astray far from the field
where God and my heart meet and stand still.)
What would I give to just breathe and be still?
I'd lose arm or leg. With time they'd both heal.
But nothing can spare me if I'm deaf to the truth.
Satan's lies twirl me ‘round. I’m the cyclical wheel
of corporate America. I plow down meager streets
killing starving millions. Pile them in fields!
Heap them high and let them rot in the fields
of forgotten faceless who in death are tacit still.
Oh zealous conscience! Age again will heal
these pangs of shame that scream for the truth
to be heard amidst the screeching wheels
that stop on the black hot newly paved streets.
I've paid good money to build these streets
that cover unsightly concreteless fields.
(Soaring expressways lead me further still
away from God and a peace that would heal
my lie-infested psyche of greed.) No truth,
only chance, as I spin the sparkling gold wheel
of fortune. Please Lord, please stop the wheel
on the Venetia vacation! Along shimmering streets,
gondolas will take me towards fresh dreams to field.
Dreams of rivers of Barolo to keep the heart still,
allow slit veins to convalesce and arteries heal.
Wine sends the mind swirling to distract from truth.
I prefer it over wisdom. I can't swallow truth.
I'd rather whirl around like a Ferris wheel,
floating high above the impoverished streets
of a dying world. But I'm drenched in the field
of science, and I'm growing greater still.
Redemption is dust. Like a starfish I'll heal.
I need not God nor truth, as by my own will I'll heal.
I invented the wheel and I built my own streets.
What has God made...vacant field and night still?