Inaugural

My mother was crying
when I came home that night,
and when I asked her why –
she told me that
it was because
the wrong kind of man
had become President of the United States.

We’ve been here before,
my family –
watching Nazis give speeches
about nationalism
about sovereignty
about;

Patriotism.

We were the Holocaust –
the human toll
the price we paid
counted in journals,
and diaries;
in Anne Frank’s,
in Grandfather’s,
in mine.

The ones labelled “other,”
the last time
we talked
about America First;

When the clock wasn’t
counting down to
the destruction
of the world;
just to my people’s.

When the West
closed its borders
not just to refugees, but
to my family –
to our friends –
to the kind of people
that grew roses in window boxes,
and looked for God
in the rain.

But that story doesn’t sell,
doesn’t sit well
next to
“Would You Rather
Your Child Had Feminism,
Or Cancer?”

Doesn’t sit next to
alternative facts
under-reported
by a media opposition;

Doesn’t help
build walls between people –
just tears them down.

So that night,
I sat and held my mother,
instead of punching Nazis,
instead of rallying
instead of

Going to war without a vision.

I sat and I held my mother,
I sat and I cradled this poem –
so later;

I could tell you.


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