Silver-Green Ladybug on Pine Bark
The kings and queens of the world have departed,
meandered high path woods of power
by royal instinct. The low-income abandoned
to leaky roofs, un-relations, sidewalk pillows.
Aloof, the good kings fight entrapped in the mind.
The wise, tattooed illiterate is not the best fit
for this workplace. At the door,
résumé flapping in hand, he’s sad and hopeful—
murdered to the 10th degree by mere abandonment.
Martin Luther King spoke of an evil spirit present
in America. Carl Jung writes of mental epidemics
that surge through society. Ohiyesa expresses shock
at encountering vagrants upon entering his first city
and bewilderment at seeing his first world map
laid upon a table, like the sky and the stars.
Kind Bodhisattvas healthily worry
for suffering beings. Contractors, soldiers, corporate
bosses care for their kin and look up, look up.
The kings look down as is their suit
but through newspapers, screens, briefings, phone calls.
Their iron hearts blind to seek for lost Joseph.
Corner of Folsom Avenue and 10th
three, mallet and bat in hand, beat one.
Jet streaming in their blue sky, king Obama flies by.
What can he do? What can we do?
Get off the fucking plane. Dismantle
the program to colonize outer space.
In this earth, this body bleeds.
Mr. President, by mere title
your power and satisfaction’s too grand,
thousands others could hold the founding father’s self
sustaining structure—now over 300 million strong.
Kings and Queens abound scattered at the top,
within any 1000, isolated, one will always rise to the throne.
Fragment and multiply the structure a billion times,
even if over a thousand years. Raze the maximum reach
of seats of thrones to within each one’s visible world,
not to a blind beyond. Yes, some may die,
but those same some are now dying.
The body in mind and flesh will cry a meaning then,
within interconnected mental-air kingdoms of techno-crafts,
breath-simple deaths and vitality-infused yieldings to nature.
A billion different flags shimmering in lucidity and gravity.
Older than the nations, witnesses to memory
in wind silence the pines await listening intently.
Originally from Mexico, Paco Marquez studied Philosophy at UC Berkeley. He is a board member of the Sacramento Poetry Center, a member of Escritores del Nuevo Sol, and a Squaw Valley Community of Writers alumnus.