May 29, 2021 Protest for Palestine

By the time we get to DC
Only 5,000 people remain
Most of them brown
Most of them Palestinian
Protesting the Israeli occupation and
Senseless killing of women and children

Seventy four years is a lifetime
To train violence into your system
So you can fall asleep to the blasted sounds of
Buildings falling
People dying
Behind your eyes a bright light
Always shining
And you pretending the caterwauling of horror
Is but the sea calling

God is the sea that comes and goes
Willy nilly while human beings
Exchange places with numbers
Beyond the long shadow of death
Encompassing the world
There is silence
Where there should be weeping
Accord where there should be protest
Antipathy where there should be a great outpouring—

Of what?

Of love for what 74 years has wrought
For the cancerous cells that do not die
The eyes that do not close
The evil that does not cease
The mouth that never stops competing
With the cry of sirens and bombs
We have told ourselves is
But the sea calling.

Arya F. Jenkins is a Colombian-American poet and writer whose poems have appeared in many journals and zines, most recently Hawaii Pacific Review, Jerry Jazz Musician, OyeDrum Magazine and Reverie Magazine. Poetry is forthcoming in The Ekphrastic Review and The Bookends Review. Her poetry has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and has been widely anthologized. She is the author of four poetry chapbooks, a short story collection, Blue Songs in an Open Key (Fomite Press), and a novel, Punk Disco Bohemian (NineStar Press). Her latest poetry chapbook is Singing in the Dark (Alien Buddha Press, 2022). Read other articles by Arya F., or visit Arya F.'s website.