The city was but dust back then,
when garbage bags danced in the wind
the papers in the ashes scattered;
The turn-dials for the plastic shattered.
Out of the fallout, water out—
Oxygen was all the mattered,
take a second, breathe;
and there is, and there it’s clean.
Then when it rained, when snowflakes fall,
all of the water cleaned, it soothed;
your life is our dream come truth.
Oxygen was all they had,
and merchants sold it by the bag;
without the water or the air,
the madmen pulled out all their hair,
for moisture in those plastic bags.
Some nations made their borders glass,
and would not let the mutants pass.
Gunfire rained down on them, they fled,
it looked as though the borders bled.
They all could hear them as they cried;
the ones that tried had masks but died,
as the last blood of their life had dried.
And some of those saw through the dark,
the ones with that strange Libra mark—
ate each other to survive.
The sky was methane and it rained
in torrents blistered left then came
and festered went the legs went lame.
Some wandered through the empty parks,
where once were laughing children there,
before they pulled out all their hair;
they played and danced all night and laughed—
and when their silent circle froze,
it flaked away like ash.
Ring around the roses,
such a childhood game
was never to be eaten,
by the maelstrom of the flame.
In their coffins by the stream
lay they in a languid dream
Where the sky was blue
and the sun its golden hue
washed over yearning trees,
their faces turned toward the light.
When the sun rose in the morn,
scarlet rays of light were thrown
through shelters empty blind.
There was a time for people, when,
they were garbage in the wind
from one place to another rolling stone
and by this to say they rambled
some never found a home;
From the gutters to the bars
and those in a drunken stupor
saw nothing but the stars.
Once the sky was azure view,
and people lived together,
sleeping in a cotton bed,
plush cushions made of leather—
not in atomic bombshell shelters.
underneath that sky—flint gray
you could not tell the night from day.
When you heard the birds that sing,
in the gardens in the spring.
in the tempest of the storm—
precious stones like pearls were formed,
birds in turns flew deeper south,
where arctic winds wiped all them out;
the penguins in their famous march—
was nothing but life’s final farce,
they had nowhere to go;
All of them and all their children
were buried in the snow.
The ardent fields where cattle grazed,
Sol peaked through in narrow rays;
tears roll down the windowpane.
Beautiful the charming, sang:
rain is the tears of God
The memories are echoes,
and they dissipate like ghosts
Some of them walk silence,
through our rooms
and down the hall.
And underneath the disco ball—
they dance their deathless unseen waltz.
Like all of mother’s children—
they bathed for long a time.
Until the long night to them came,
when the sun slept being drained;
then in the dark the fireflies
appeared like stars in vacant skies.
The world itself a turn goes ‘round
in its orbit not a sound,
and when the sun woke for the day,
the flowers turned their blushing face,
to the sun when night was slain,
the children could come out again.
A dream can fill a life’s most ill,
the troubled minds there are—
and when we look up the stars,
we’re looking at ourselves,
alone when standing by the shelf
once walked away;
when no one was left to play,
No more long walks through the park,
There was no time to play
troupes of saddened actors
fretted on an empty stage.
And no one in the crowd to praise,
Sometimes in the dark of night,
they climb up the stairs with shaking lights
onto a building’s top
they folded their construction papers,
in the shape of butterflies—
and they together let them go, to fly,
like crumpled paper went they by.
Above their echoed the last swan song,
the origami butterfly in silence fluttered on.