W. D. Ehrhart  
 
   

To Those Who Have Gone Home Tired

 
    After the streets fall silent
After the bruises and the tear-gassed eyes are healed
After the concensus has returned
After the memories of Kent and My Lai and Hiroshima
lose their power
and their connections with each other
and the sweaters labeled Made in Taiwan
After the last American dies in Canada
and the last Korean in prison
and the last Indian at Pine Ridge
After the last whale is emptied from the sea
and the last leopard emptied from its skin
and the last drop of blood refined by Exxon
After the last iron door clangs shut
behind the last conscience
and the last loaf of bread is hammered into bullets
and the bullets
scattered among the hungry

What answers will you find
What armor will protect you
when your children ask you

Why?
 
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    Copyright © 1977 by W. D. Ehrhart
Rootless, Samisdat, 1977
This poem is currently published in Beautiful Wreckage, New & Selected Poems, Adastra Press, 1999
 
         
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