Inauguration Day

As soon as the oath was said
the electricity went out in Van Nuys.
The first thing to go in

a world where the earth has
always been the same temperature
are the basic services.

The first thing to go in
a world where we’re asked to root
for the pussy grabber

is standing idly by.
It’s raining in every civilized
community. That empty space

beneath the Capitol steps
is where I’m not standing.
People with famous names are

leading the charge towards
the next inauguration, or their
new favorite ice cream flavor

People are making art
with their fists. The message:

I’ve got something you can defund,
right here.
There is a hot sun,
just the other side of the clouds.

I promise you it’s there. All this water
falling out of the sky, can’t stop the
Bush from burning.



Rick Lupert

Los Angeles poet Rick Lupert is a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee. He created and hosted the Cobalt Cafe reading for almost 21 years (which lives on as a virtual series). His 27 collections of poetry include God Wrestler and The Low Country Shvitz. He edited the anthologies A Poet’s Siddur, A Poet’s Haggadah, The Night Goes on All Night. and Ekphrastia Gone Wild. Rick works as a music teacher and graphic designer. He writes a weekly Jewish poetry column for and can also be found online at He’s fond of his wife, their son, and cats.


Edited for Unlikely by Jonathan Penton, Editor-in-Chief
Last revised on Friday, February 3, 2017 - 09:54