To the Savages

We will number you and we will name you
Probe the fatty snail-curls of your brain
Pick your dreams apart on some zinc slab
and give to your disease a Christian name

It is we who make you noble or annul you
Even when we take your side, you drown
We paint your knuckles from the desert that destroyed you
We chip you from the ice still screaming without sound
We the people we will name what we will name you
We will write you into pages and then fold you
Your arrowheads shoeboxed in our garage
You may speak, but you will speak what we have told you
Your flaying-stones now silent under glass
(This too will oxidize into the past)


Ray Nayler