Fist over fist: I shove the laundry down. Slam the lid. Turn away. Nothing to do but wait out the wash cycle.
The washer rumbles, does slow dirty work. On CNN
the killing act looks like a video game: The shooter
pivots fast around a pillar.
Bang: Cop dead― rolls back 180 to cover. Ex-mil.
Trained to kill.
The machine halts. I lift the lid. My hands reach
into the drenching chamber and pull up damp shrouds.
BOOM: Dallas PD sniper takes off veteran's head.
I drop my basket of cleans in the coined-up dryer:
keeping whites white
and colors clean.
You should help yourself. And plan better too.
Island & hurricane, pina & colada: These go together.
I hear you are still without power, or is it just electricity?
Sorry we have no budget to airlift generators, water, or sat-phones.
The SEALS and Rangers would bring medicine to your village
but they are killing brown people half a world away.
Don't blame FEMA for not thinking this forward:
Who knew Maria would track that way?
Next time, keep some plastic jugs of water and bleach ready.
FEMA likes you better if you lighten up a bit.
These people got out before landfall. They helped themselves.
They help themselves to everything.
Jemshed Khan was born overseas but lives and works in Kansas and Missouri. Much of his writing deals with ethical misgivings. He has published poems in Rigorous, Rat's Ass Review, the chapbook NanoText (Medusa's Laugh Press, February 2017), Clockwise Cat, shufPoetry, Pilcrow & Dagger, Heartland:150 Kansas Poems and I-70 Review. He has work slated for I-70 Review (2018) and Writers Resist (2017).