Flicker and Buzz

We of this dull and prosperous society
Where organized money fills any gaps
Where any space between things
Has long ago been mortared and closed
Healing done on that which is not sick
We have little time to think on our sorrows
Or joys before the next of them come
Both parades of extremes
Spinning our heads and bodies
In constant motion
It is hard to recall
The world before this
With late night TV test patterns
Storefronts that dimmed for the night
Long distance plans and landlines
Letters and longhand writing
When space and time between things
Still existed and our minds could keep pace
With patterns presented before them
Now we flicker and buzz
Overloaded with mournful loss and hopeful possibilities
We never take form
Because there is no space between
That still remains
Nowhere to settle for a moment
To take our full forms once again

Gene G. McLaughlin 2015


Her arms are bound, but she will not be kept here against her will. She did not come west all those years ago to die in some God forsaken cabin raped and killed by some monster in the woods. The winters were too hard and days too long for that. She looks at the shotgun and tries to decide how to have it mounted when he comes back in the door. She will shoot backwards looking in the lone mirror in the cabin if she has to. She will have one shot and damn it she will make it count. Her husband and son will not come back from Cheyenne and find her missing and not know what happened. She will live.

Goodbye Colubmia

To those who feel wronged by the Confederate flag lowering tomorrow take heart. Those of us for lowering the flag know that the minimum death toll of the American Civil War was 625,000. It was quite possibly 1,000,000. There were bastards, hero’s, no accounts, saints and sinners on both sides. The wrong side of history has room for many. There is one important fact we definitely know. We know that every death on both sides lead to Emancipation. Emancipation is the moment this nation began. Every sacrifice on both sides is remembered. It gave birth to anything great we are or will become. Our nation is the sons and daughters of Confederates, Unionists, Immigrants and Slaves. When our greatest sin ended we all began. Grace to all who made Emancipation possible. It is not forgotten.

Gene G. McLaughlin 2015