One Crying Out in the Desert

In youth, it was a sight of suspicion;
reason no cure for bitter derision
at chalk on green, unnatural designs obscene,
foreboding concrete spawn raging supreme.
O, Clio, have we learned nothing of walls?
The lesson that the prophet has scrawled
says clearly that defense absent vigil
is false, futile, and innately baneful.
My freedom rests uneasily tonight;
for me, it will not change by morning’s light.
It might be late to voice the things I’ve said:
I eulogize the grass soon brown and dead.





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John Charles Priestley II was born and resides in South Charleston, West Virginia. Hobbies include reading; cooking the Japanese, Chinese, and Thai foods he has mastered; gardening; and renovating his “money pit” residence.