The light fades again

across the mountains

outside the window 

above  his desk 

where he reads 

the old masters. 

He looks up,

then, as if struck by a sword, 

he furrows his brow.

But now is not the time

for blood to rain from heaven:

the war, as before, continues 

unabated and unnoticed.

If he is to find purity’s root

within his world’s manifest divisions,

he must leave his comfortable chair

and charge into the heart of his war.

This must be done, again 

and again, with an iron heart, 

until he can laugh again; 

and, the earth absorbs 

the spilled wine 

as if it were an apology 

offered too late to a god.

(June 12, 2022)

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