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A Guide to Ignoring Nuclear War


by Arturo Ruiz


The nature of burned hills—

Ashes rain in heavy dark.
Traces & bits of bone
drift in wind like sand thrown
on a gust swept beach.

Can you sense the blood from the sea,
the bitter iron smell of it?

Keep enough memories of spring—
the jaundiced daffodils blossoming
into a scream,
the glare & stare of the gerberas—
to endure the saboteurs
& the flare of reckless war.

O, father
can you hear the whisper
from the exorcised part of me
free of your dust & devils?

I am tired of death.
Even my tears stand motionless,
beading & beading.
Will you lick the salt of me?
I am a pillar,
Lot's wife for the tasting.

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