A Golden Shovel for Mr. Hughes

(On the Absurd Existence of the Powerless)

Here I hang from this high tree, say What,
While the Big G just sits up there, who happens
To be punching holes in Cheerios to
The tune of a
Melodic Everly Brothers song, All I have to do is Dream

Hey Mom! Has my sentence been deferred?
No? Well, Say ‘Hi’ to Pete and all the guys, Does
This mean they have forsaken me, or does it
Mean the forgiveness well has run dry
I didn’t really expect to be up
In this Dogwood like
All forlorn and shriveled and hanging like a
Grape going to raisin

Hey, where’s that guy going with that spear in
His hand? He’s going to poke me? Does the
Roman know why there is no splendor in the sun?

Excuse me, Centurion or
Is it miles*? Don’t let your hatred fester
Where did you get those sandals? They are like
The Kingdom of Heaven a
Manly pair of footwear, do your feet get sore --
Really? And
What did you pay then
Before you found out you couldn’t run?

Ugh-h-h-h … Does
That ever smart it
Is supposed to help me die faster? Mom, don’t make a stink
Will my kingdom be like
This weather that has turned rotten
Or like pork the new white meat?

No mom, it’s just a story... Or
Should I say a parable What? you got more crust
Than a Pharisee and
A Roman asking me to sugar
Coat the story for this over
Zealous group enthralled by the idea of death like
Watching a man take a
Last breath while his mom asks in a syrupy
Voice aint he sweet?

What? Why would I tell an absurd story Maybe
I don’t know? Maybe I wonder why it
Is so important why it just
Takes my mind from a body that sags
As gravity pulls me toward death like
Diminishing space eliminates time a

Burden I must bear that weighs heavy
On my mind the sins of man are a load
That must be shared Or
We will all be crushed you ask does
It have to be this way does it
Why can’t the Kingdom of Heaven just explode?

*miles (pronounced mee-lays) is Latin for soldier

After you have finished reading the poem, please go back and read the last word of each line aloud as the author, Silence Dogood, pays homage to Langston Hughes.

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About the Author

Silence Dogood began his writing career as a typesetter for the New England Courant. After a conflict with the Mather family of Boston over vaccinations, Silence was forced to flee to Philadelphia, where he began working for another newspaper the Pennsylvania Gazette which he later purchased. Silence later worked with Al Gore to invent the Aqua Net for water soluble computers. The technology they developed was later purchased for an undisclosed amount that has been estimated to be in the tens of dollars. Silence now resides in the Ozarks.

Silence Dogood
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