(For the"Tank Man" of Tiananmen Square, 6/5/89)
Golden gong, summer's bell!
You hang from mature limbs
like the grocery bags the man lifts
in the video of Tiananmen Square:
it is the day after Chinese troops killed
hundreds of protesters there.
A row of tanks rumbles down the avenue.
A lone man appears:
he raises his arms in front of the steel Goliaths.
Lurching right, he follows. Left, he follows.
A few onlookers cheer. All goes still.
He climbs onto the lead tank and a hatch opens:
the two speak of something we will never know.
He scrambles down as two men rush up,
muscling him into a crowd.
O jade lantern, ripened by un-censored light,
balanced on a shard of noon! I take you into me,
down to your last piece, as the film from your broken skin
glints on my small, sharp knife.
American poet Thor Bacon's poems have appeared most recently in The Aurorean, and in the anthology, If Bees Are Few, edited by James P. Lenfestey. Mr. Bacon lives and works in Michigan as a goldsmith.
Spineless Spicer looks as if a squid armed with
lady-razors races at him from a circus cannon;
Rumplestiltskin hides under his podium.
Though I was the last to know, at least she told me.
Who'll tell Trump we caught his mouth lying around?
A vine can choke the branches but still it's not the tree.
Of course we have a travel ban, and another wall.
A split-personality requires that
one side never find out about the others.
We're as stupid now as when Chinese poet Tu-Fu
railed at corrupt officials and their handy wars!
Walt Disney’s mummy lies in a Kremlin vault.
Ask my friend Arthur about revolution.
“That S.O.B. would rant for hours with his dealer
while I sat freezing in the choking Saab.”
Thor, is it enough to call out these crooked leaders
when you still kneel at the stool of your private tyrant
re-stacking his collection of gold-plated vertebrae?
thistles stretch their prickly arms afar