The Voice Issue 32: October 2017 - Page 15

As I stand on this hill looking west

As I stand on this hill looking west

at you, America –

or what will soon become you –

I am overwhelmed by the beauty before my eyes.

Your lands are so vast,

your fertile ground so resplendent

with roses the color of the blood of those with brown skin.

You remember what we sow

and it grows with a fragrance strong enough

to mask the scent of four thousand rotting bodies

buried beneath the hills of Oklahoma. 

My golden-haired, pale-skinned

Spirit of American Progress

raises me from where I stand 

and carries me across your terrain in the palm of her hand.

She gifts you to me, America, and with you every creature to cross your land

whether with four legs or two. 

In one pocket, I carry a quill to sign a treaty with a signature that lies

and in the other a gun 

in case the other party hesitates. 

I would pull the trigger for you, America. 

In fact, I can hardly keep my finger off it. 

As I stand on this hill looking west,

I drink the red wine of your wild grapes –

one part Atlantic, one part Pacific,

and one part something crimson and warm and endlessly flowing

to give it that signature American color.

- Firegirl03, Burlington, VT