10.06.17
Weekly poem on Trump Presidency

 

MICHAEL BAZZETT

The Anger Artist

daubed smoky brushstrokes
across his canvas
with a touch that seemed
both nonchalant and blessed

In another context
he might have been a wayward
uncle with ridiculous hair

When the time came for his opening,
the audience gathered outside
the windows of the gallery

standing beyond the red velvet rope
clipped to a brass standard

They shouldered one into the other
eyes wild with hope
until hours beyond the time
the doors were supposed to open

He stood unrecognized among them
fomenting quiet insurrection
until they finally turned and battered
him with a thousand kicks

and a woman drove a pen
into the soft meat of his neck

He used the warm blood to write
their most private thoughts
upon the window panes, again and again—

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Michael Bazzett is the author of The Interrogation (Milkweed Editions, 2017), Our Lands Are Not So Different (Horsethief Books, 2017), and You Must Remember This (Milkweed Editions, 2014), which received the 2014 Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry. Bazzett has received the Bechtel Prize from Teachers & Writers Collaborative and a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. He teaches at The Blake School and lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota. 
"The Anger Artist" originally appeared in The Freshwater Review.

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illustration: anna_croc01

illustration: anna_croc01