A Dissenter Breaks Protocol
by Benjamin Walker
October 23, 2011
It gets tense if the assembly’s wrists go limp.
We let our hands dangle when we disapprove,
wave when we’re willing to march in support,
and form crosses along our chests when a move
will spur us into hard opposition, sending us home.
A homeless man sitting outside the circle, donated
trench coat, black knitted cap, drops his water
bottle on the grass, and starts to scream back
about how he’s had it with our fucking assembly,
our drum circles, communal loaves and droning talks
that never end. Frantic members from the Mediation
Committee run after him as he reaches the street,
giving his own speech on why Jubilee won’t come,
agitating the police, staring into traffic for an hour.
Benjamin Walker is an MFA Candidate in Creative Writing at Hollins University in Roanoke, Virginia. His poems recently appeared in PANK, SOFTBLOW, Orange Quarterly and other journals. New work is forthcoming in Mobius: the Journal of Social Change.