03.03.17
Weekly poem on Trump Presidency
 

TONY HOAGLAND

Gorgon

Now that you need your prescription glasses to see the stars
and now that the telemarketers know your preference in sexual positions

Now that corporations run the government
and move over the land like giant cloud formations

Now that the human family has turned out to be a conspiracy against the planet

Now that it's hard to cast stones
without hitting a cell phone tower
                                                   that will show up later on your bill

Now that you know you are neither innocent, nor powerful,
nor a character in a book;

You have arrived at the edge of the world
where the information wind howls incessantly

and you stand in your armor made of irony
with your sword of good intentions raised--

The world is a Gorgon.
It presents its thousand ugly heads

It displays its writhing serpent hair
Death to look at it directly for too long

But

Your job is not to conquer it;
not to provide analysis;
not to make a wry remark

Your job is to be kind
Your job is to watch and take notes

Your job is to not be turned into a stone.

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Tony Hoagland is the author of five poetry collections, including Application For Release From The Dream, Unincorporated Persons in the Late Honda Dynasty and What Narcissism Means to Me, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. He is also the author of two collections of essays, Twenty Poems That Could Save America and Other Essays and Real Sofistikashun: Essays on Poetry and Craft. He has received the Jackson Poetry Prize from Poets & Writers, the Mark Twain Award from the Poetry Foundation and the O. B. Hardison, Jr. Poetry Prize from the Folger Shakespeare Library.
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