01 July 2015

Burning Churches

Officials said they hadn’t determined the cause of the fire at Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church in Greeleyville, S.C.


Churches are burning in the USA—
Seven Black Churches burned as of today!
These are Medieval tactics of terror
we’re reduced to.  Whites, People of Color—
are all threatened by white supremacists
acting as if God gave them some great twists
we don’t have.  Extra thumbs?  Hatred of peace?  
Neediness and greed?  Do they think these
cowardly fires will empower their lives?
Earn them better pay, more respect, high fives?
God has given and taken greater ill
than you can conjure in your evil thrill
and wills us to hold firm in our resolve
and win so humanity can evolve.

Copyright © 2015  S.L.Chast

Marriage Vows

"An attractive couple..." from Margaret Scott's Drawing du Jour

Drawing used with permission.

Ladies Liberty
and Justice married today
and now honeymoon.

They're off to pursue
Happiness, while witnesses
continue to dance.

Where they touch, flowers
already grow.  Where they touch
food enough for all.

Freedom will remove
the blindfold from her lover’s
eyes and restore sight.

Justice will reckon
the weight of hate flames and death
against Freedom’s Light.

And chose her partner
again and again to ex-
cite Passion and Peace.

They longed to marry
for centuries, and here, now
they are, hand in hand.

Expect to see huge
changes throughout the land, to
see changes at hand.

Copyright © 2015  S.L.Chast

29 June 2015

Water Falls


How deep the empty well that makes no sound?
To drop and drop and drop, no water falls
except from icebergs melting in to sea-
son’s wrong and churning waves rise higher, skies
are warmer warmed than fish can stand, and you
and I scoop water hand by hand into
our boats for hope that floats nowhere to go.

Such friends the beasts of water be to feed
our need—we draw for them without a pail,
without a hope but still we pray and save
liquid against the day it fails to last.
How deep the empty well that makes no sound?
To drop and drop and drop, no water falls
except from icebergs melting to the sea.

Copyright © 2015  S.L.Chast

25 June 2015

His first Mistake

We spit contempt
toward the white man
who expected this
old venom to flow.

He pulled out his white
handkerchief to wipe
his face and lapel,
held the smoking gun
tightly in his free
hand and worked his worm-
like lips into a
sly grin that did not
mean surrender.

“What you goin to do?” 
he barked.  “Tell your Ma?”

60 words for Words Count With Mama Zen at Imaginary Garden with Real Toads.

Copyright © 2015  S.L.Chast

23 June 2015

Summer Solstice

Heat enters on the longest day, squats
and belches its pleasure at green and humid
lushness.  Heat smacks its lips sipping nectar
under drowsy bees weighted with pollen
golden as sun peeking around dark clouds.

The rain is dangerous relief.  Lightning
and thunder chase birds and heat across grasses
pounded flat and pebbled driveways parted
into rivulets and pocked with hail stones.

Later, in post-storm quiet, cool freshness
embraces skin, delights flaring nostrils
and invites mouths and petals to swallow.

Leaning into the aftermath, night bright
as day and short as possible, follows.

Copyright © 2015  S.L.Chast

Face Bruises


We rejoice in being ordinary
able to be ignored, lost in a crowd,
passed over for finer posies to pluck

And so, when our like buttons aren't pushed
in line-ups of liked Facebook posts, we feel
publically shamed and sadly disarranged

And wonder what we said wrong and if some
sweet ones would notice if we don’t reply
until we forget the wounds or they heal

Copyright © 2015  S.L.Chast