Standing with ISIS

Shant’s family fled from the Armenian genocide
to Syria, which was a safe and beautiful country
just a few years ago, kind of like the states are now
it only took the period of a presidency,
under four years, to turn it to mass genocide
and the warm restaurants and schools
into craters left by bombings

Show me one refugee who has ever harmed this country
and I will turn right around and explain to Shant
why we are leaving him to die and to be persecuted
as a Christian, because of his religion;
because we hate Muslims and are scared of them.
I will try to explain how that makes any sense.

Show me one way in which
that isn’t supporting ISIS and terrorism
and the deaths of thousands of innocent people
who everyone else in the world is rushing to welcome

and I will leave Trump to talk to Putin
about how they plan to combat ISIS
while leaving them to terrorize
and kill off their victims

and by the way? You might as well
leave South Korea out of it.
I don’t think they’re going
to want our protection
for much longer

North Korea is nothing
compared to what
we’re doing

maybe not immediately
but our country
will hopefully
lose it’s power
and quickly

The Separation of a Six Year Old

A six year old was separated
from his mother for hours
in question of his immigration status

JK Rowling is saying
that Voldemort was never so horrible
Athiests are quoting the bible
Starbucks is saying, eh, on second thought,
money’s really not that important

and we are all that six year old
for the last few days

id love to get to the part
where we can cling to our mother again

What’s next?

Sometimes, I wake up smiling
then I turn on the news
and I’m like, “Oh, right.”

I read all the protest signs
before I can get out of bed
in the morning

one of them just reads
and then I start to cry.

I really believed in this country
I really, really tried.

Corporate heads are
throwing money at the problem
to give free sanctuaries
and provide insurance-
for every hateful comment
there’s even more money donated
rich people are fighting

the protests have not ended
for every hateful comment
there’s more people
pointing to how wrong
all of this is

but our own people
are scattered and stranded
in other countries
confused about
where home is, what’s next
and frightened

I have to hope that
this can’t last
not when so many of us
are against it
but then again,
I have to wonder
what the hell is next

I stop

I stop writing poetry
whenever she talks to me
because then there’s no
mysteries, or discontent
or volatile uprisings
within me.
She’s talking to me
she’s talking to me.

and everything
is still and happy.
Except for one thing,
she doesn’t want me.

I stop writing poetry
whenever she doesn’t want me
because then there’s
no reason to pick up the pen
or get out of bed
or anything

she doesn’t want me back
she doesn’t like it

she’d rather be alone
several oceans over
and inaccessible by phone
floating into great vast nothings
than to be in my arms

I’d like to say
I don’t write much at all
because the world is ending
and I’ll never see her again
and I’ve lost so many things
and my life is empty

but I can’t stop writing
I’ve tried
the first car crash
screwed up something
inside me so that
I couldn’t stop writing
maybe the second
will go back and fix it-
imagine that,
no more chattering

Animal Facts

“Dolphins sleep with one eye open.”
she writes me,
after a month of silence,
just that one sentence
I always have to decode
how she’s feeling
based on animal facts.

I say, “I’ve missed you
it’s good to hear from you
is everything ok?
and you know…
if you asked me
to run away
with you tomorrow
I would still
drop everything.”

She says, “Well,
if I were a dolphin,
I would too.
Sleep like that,
I mean.”

So, you see,
she isn’t really
ready yet
to talk to me
she digresses
it’s been
almost a year now
and I’m still waiting

but one day
I’ll be too grounded
to make those kinds of offers
I think she knows that
and it’s why she’s angry

it’s why she said to me once,
“Jellyfish have no heart.”
instead of when she loved me
and said, “Otters
hold hands when they sleep
so they don’t drift apart
in the currents.”
That was after she left me
and she wanted to say,
I think,
that she still loved me.
Well, back then,
she did.

I heard once that
there was this old man
who thought he met
“the one”
back in college.
She left and he married
and had children
but he was always plagued
by the thought
if she came back
would I leave them?
He thought it was
regrettably, a yes.
But she never did.
Then one day,
he looked at his wife
and realized “The one”
would never have
left him like she did.
So, she wasn’t the one
for him,
she couldn’t have been.