Sunday, May 8, 2016

Simone Weil 14

Time does us violence; it is the only violence. Near Disney World, her father screamed they were going to die if they didn't get the exit right. It's not time that confuses us, but place. Baghdad descends on Orlando like a section of gray matter. There's no telling the squares apart, the one where you visit Mickey Mouse or the other where your soldier gets blown up by an IED. Mickey lives in a safe house on the perimeter. Children rush to him as if he were the Pope in velvet slippers, gently touching the hems of his costume. But her father walks the Kingdom's streets knowing that each house hides a man with a gun. Memory is a protectorate he left long ago. When she says she wants to write about this, he asks why. To save our family, she says. It's a small world after all.


Janet said...

It's fascinating how "Baghdad descends on Orlando like a section of grey matter"--how the brain works, and then everything is checkered. The ending provides such a kick.

Karen said...

Oh! We've been conversing about this. I wonder if some shuffling might help, since I don't have context and can't make the first three sentences work together without that fourth sentence (and even the fourth sentence might need more... something. "Section of gray matter" feels confusing). But after that the poem settles in and does the good work of scrambling Disney and war, which seems so very perfect. Nice ending.

susan said...

The section of gray matter is one of those slices of the brain that researchers make. Was thinking (I think) of the brain as what tells us what we are, as well as the site of injury in this case. And now to say I'm not a robot.