Beneath a cloudless blue sky
I feel the storm coming,
black clouds gathering.
Could they reflect black shirts?
if I should be building false walls
to hide those who will be escaping tyranny.
if I am far enough from a border to avoid
A century ago,
they didn’t understand the signs,
but now we do.
Those who read are the first removed
when the evil rises.
Do all those kids who demanded,
“Why do we have to learn this?”
remember that their teachers said,
“So you’ll see the signs.”
“So it will never happen again.”
“Remember, they elected Hitler;
“they heiled and fell for his lies,
“because they wanted to believe their superiority,
“wanted a scapegoat for their troubles.”
There can be no excuses.
Shall I buy bricks or drywall?
Where will I construct false bottoms?
Where will we hide in the resulting rubble,
when the jack boots stomp through?
Another cristelnacht, this time in New York?
The hammock swings its consolation:
It can’t happen here.
It won’t happen here.
How many said those words a century
How many grew to knowing the meaning