Friday, February 13, 2009

Ceremony of the Hopegrinder

No one serves subpoenas to the Hopegrinder.


Nelson had centered his origami armadillo
gently on the noonday cooking asphalt
of a vacant, rural highway;
it was that time of year.
Celebratory sacrifices had found their poetic way
into his practice of vigilance;
his fondness for prophetically exposing
painful truth amidst deceit;
he found it all, subversively inspirational.
Somewhere between reaching for the sugar

and his watching its crystalline flow
into that aromatic cupful of steamy black reflections...
it enters;
takes the stool next to him at the counter.
It carries that almost distinguished

cigarbox styled lockchest full of wrapped, bundled digits
belonging to so many thumb-less friends.
Aggravatingly, their voices still whisper,
"After all, what harm in its charity?"

Its gentlemanly politeness, so rude.

At one's first encounter, it's difficult to be repulsed

given the false comfort which the Hopegrinder provides;
its striking presence seemingly always just in time.
This dapper thief of just the juice,
disarms those who dare to hope to change the world;
it opts for their destruction by distraction.

Though perhaps alone, he'd lost respect for this wicked wizard.

Having spied that culprit's play,
its jovial courtship ritual,
its compassionate anesthetization,
its graciously maneuvered ushering of lives
along the slaughter trail
where those numbed, time-shared souls
arrive somewhat dismembered, yet sadly, none
noticing any inconvenience.
Not in fear, but silent grinning, he capped his coffee,
slipped two bills across the counter and
without a glance slid effortlessly from his spinning perch,
subtly bumping past the angered shoulder of
the Hopegrinder.

Copyright (c) 2006 Gary Brown

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