Beauty in a Time of Lies:  
Truth in a Time of Horror

by Gerard Donnelly Smith


November 1, 2004   


            Gliding along the sidewalk, she sways
hips side-to-side like a trolley on uneven tracks,
turning heads, breaking hearts, inspiring sonnets
by the regretful poet/ess.

            Unashamed the lovers kiss in public:
her hand on her ass; her hand on her cheek.
Bystanders—guilty onlookers—cringe or smile,
secretly desiring prudery's end.

            Innocently she recites her commandments,
unaware of sin, of evil, or even the meaning
of an unselfish act: these are still only words,
theories without empirical evidence.

            Struggling to find balance, he steps
toward parents with outstretched hands beckoning
in hope, in joyful in fruition, cliché in their abundant pride,
fears and worries set aside for now.

            Neck-and-neck, foot-fall to foot-fall, racing,
their muscles taunt, sleek, and made for speed
only momentary competitors reveling in their bodies,
prizing only the competition, not the crown.

            Standing outside the mission, empty pockets
full of missed opportunities, they wait for food,
for an evening indoors in bed, for misery's company,
for hearts ruled by compassion.

            Overhead two jets scream toward the sea;
patrolling over the Pacific Northwest,
the pilots pray for peace, pray that suffering end,
pray that their cargo will never be delivered.

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Poetry on Swans

America the 'beautiful' on Swans


Gerard Donnelly Smith on Swans (with bio).

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Published November 1, 2004
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