Abortion Sonnet When I have fears that I may cease to be before my pen can punctuate the brains of all those smug-ass pricks who only see the world beneath their thumbs; the ones who say all lives are precious, valued, even though they fail to give one solitary fuck about us, who oppress us with their faux compassion; those who pluck at psalms to suck the mercy out of their own god, then spit on us for not obeying their demands; if their theocracy can only sit in unreflecting power—then understand I’ll rage against their sanctimonious shit and drag their raggedy-ass empire to bits. W/apologies to Keats Rage Sonnet #12 When I do count the clock that tells the time and see all reason battered by the Right, when trash judicial dockets toe the line with silver-haired oppressors in the night; when lofty ideals I see barren of fruit which erst created opportunity, and Liberty’s all tangled in lawsuits and borne with books into a burning spree; then of our nation’s future I do ask: will we among the wasted empires go or will we set upon a brighter task? We could decay in fear, or choose to grow. And nothing but compassion can forestall our pride from shambling into our downfall. w/apologies to Shakespeare When thistles war When thistles war, anathematizing God and briars break and nettles split their pods, the clandestine apostles hide their pricks and Job waits up to catalog the tricks while stalwart nuns direct the thunderclaps and garish pollen sanctifies the lapse of reason when a solitary brood of passions rise to demonize the nude. And if I tremble, if I question fate when flowers rumble and reciprocate with ghoulish laughter, can you wonder why I’ve lost my faith? Who would decry the crass deportment of an errant weed or criticize the mutinous behavior of a seed in transit? Do I have to quantify how many dancing angels have ere died by pinprick? Can I possibly excuse the tendency of rosaries to lose? I cannot. No, I simply can’t explain how thickets thrive where furrows only gain.
Tara Campbell is a writer, teacher, Kimbilio Fellow, fiction co-editor at Barrelhouse, and graduate of American University’s MFA in Creative Writing. Her publication credits include SmokeLong Quarterly, Masters Review, Wigleaf, Booth, and CRAFT Literary. She’s the author of a novel and four multi-genre collections including her newest, Cabinet of Wrath: A Doll Collection. Connect with her on Twitter at @TaraCampbellCom
Image: Thistledown a method of seed dispersal by wind from Pollinator under GNU Free Documentation License