Tender are the graves of confederate generals and tender
are the graves of the great great great grandchildren of slaves.
Take away the thing that comes between us, take down the wall
take down that flag that put the gun in your heart
If the white dragon cannot speak poetry to hate
she embarrasses its friends, makes
its relatives think he’s crazy, send him back home
to mow his lawn. Give his children some ammunition
for their teenage rebellion. Make
his wife want to leave him, his buddies wish he would just
cut out early, the people at the job site, the office, the church,
school or industry wish he would quit, fail, drop out or convert
to a quietist sect of professional blood donors who simply live
so that others will not die.
If somebody kills me, I’ll be dead indefinitely. The white dragon
will see me go.
Dennis Formento lives in Slidell, LA, USA, near his native New Orleans. His books of poetry include Spirit Vessels (FootHills Publishing, 2018), Cineplex (Paper Press, 2014,) Looking for An Out Place (FootHills Publishing, 2010.) Dennis edited Mesechabe: The Journal of Surregionalism 1990-2001. He is the St. Tammany Parish organizer of poetry events for 100,000 Poets for Change, a network of poets for peace, sustainability and justice world-wide. His recent publications include translations out of Italian of poems by Florentine poet Cristina Campo (1923-1977), soon out from BlazeVOX, and a few of his own poems translated into Italian in the bioregional publication, Lato Selvatico.