12.17.2018

Weekly poem on Trump Presidency

 

SHANE MCCRAE

Do Not Be American

Lord welcome them the children I have paid

My government to kill     forgive me     Lord

 

God     if I do not ask if asking I

Command     Lord I command     as I have by

  

Children been many times commanded whose

Commands are sweet and firstly song     may these

  

Commands be song to You     be native to

Them do not be     as I’ve imagined You

 

To be do not be     Christian     Lord do not be

American     be many gods     be nothing

 

Be gently nothing     Lord to those who had

No need of You     I will not say they had 

 

Need of You     now     be a new dream

To those who dreamed Heaven on Earth     would welcome them

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Shane McCrae's most recent books are The Gilded Auction Block (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2019) and In the Language of My Captor (Wesleyan University Press, 2017), which won the 2018 Anisfield-Wolf Prize for Poetry, and was a finalist for the National Book Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and the William Carlos Williams Award. He has received a Lannan Literary Award, a Whiting Writer's Award, and a fellowship from the NEA. He is the Poetry Editor at Image, teaches at Columbia University, and lives in New York City.

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