I.Sunset after the long day
So many things a bullet can do and most of all only one. The weather just turned in Tucson; it hadn’t seemed so cold this morning.
Most of all in this one, this late dawn-drenched pueblo, sun metal-warm, it hadn’t seemed so cold this morning until bullet screamed first.
Gunmetal warm, tear-split pueblo, a bullet interrupts, echoes, lingers until all have screamed without wanting. An exit wound in me, in every chest:
one bullet can find many bodies. The political climate had slowly turned, unforcast violence in every chest; so many things a bullet can do.
II. For my mother’s favorite politician
Most of all only one: her smile rare for política. Smile, the kind that seems a heart. This morning your breaths are yours again.
A política rare, smiling: contact at palms, one by one. That morning your breaths stolen. Finding them floating, you inhale them back.
Palms in contact, each one with tears beading in palms, find ourselves floating–pull each other back– a smile is a circle we inhale,
deeply, until like you, we smile the kind that seems a heart. A circle breathed for each other but most of all for only one.
III. After Barack Obama
How well we have loved, each of us, in our time, widening ourselves into circles, holding all inside our ribs.
But each of us in this time– our instincts sharpened for gain– hold all we can inside our stomachs until each, alone, is sick with wanting.
Now, sharpen our instincts for empathy, expand our moral imaginations until solo sick wanting, left alone, evaporates. We make believe
that all is already here, widening the circle of our concern, condensing our belief that now, making each other well, we will love.