Jon Bishop: ‘An Arrival’

An Arrival
after “The Second Coming” by W.B. Yeats

This red-cut sky, all gushed with blood. The sand
like bits of flesh from where the darkness creeps.
King of the things that slouch and slither, I
am miles from Bethlehem, was spawned in transit,
and aged for ages to perfection, mouth
with icepick teeth, lips wide and set to blow
these buildings and to smash, to shatter all,
before I suck it down into my gut.

Clocks toll the hour. Mine is here. And this,
the silence of all those who’ve blocked me out,
who still pretend that I’m unreal. Unblissful
ignorance finds its end in me. Now see
the lurching of the world toward burning lava.
I’ll push you toward the hungry flames, and then
I’ll let you breathe before you burn. You’ll call
me hero. Shame you can’t see what’s to come.
Go do your deeds and dream your broken dreams.
And smile the rictus smile that haunts the dead.

Jon Bishop


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