January 22, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

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Penn Kemp




Poem for an Awful Inauguration, Ongoing



One year on and it’s worse than we

could have imagined. Because news

is mostly fake but who can tell?

January 20, 2018


This Awful Inauguration day augurs so

dimly for us all, and we aren’t even in

the United States. The world awaits


uncertain of outcome, certain only that

meanness prevails of heart and intent.

We’ve dropped into the well of offal.


An Awful Inauguration day augurs well

for the unduly rich but poorly for poor

and dispossessed, for poor middle class.


This Awful Inauguration day augurs ill

for Obamacare, for the health of a nation,

for all illegal aliens and for alienated arts.


This Awful Inauguration day augurs dimly

for us all, and we aren’t even in the Year

of the vain Fire Rooster till January 28.


O weather vane, you parade your lies as

truth. You spin with the wind. You turn.

You twitter and trumpet trust topsy-turvy.


This Awful Inauguration day crows triumph

for the cock of the walk, king for a day, or

another four years. We withhold, withstand


his very dangerous flash in a very wide pan.

But we don’t withdraw. We march, we hold

on, hold to, truth as we know it. We refuse.


We are other. We are alien. We protest: these

Auguries of Inauguration are not innocent.






Penn Kemp

Penn Kemp is an activist Canadian poet, playwright and editor.  Her latest works are two plays celebrating local hero and explorer, Teresa Harris, produced in 2017 and published by Playwrights Guild of Canada. Recent books include Barbaric Cultural Practice (quattrobooks.ca/books/barbaric-cultural-practice/) and two anthologies edited, Women and Multimedia and Performing Women (http://poets.ca/feministcaucus/livingarchives/). See www.pennkemp.weebly.com.

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