May 25, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

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Ben Nardolilli




Anatomy of a Prelude to an Overthrow



For the head, consider this, the incomes

Trending flat for thirty some odd and rough years,

The levels of carbon dioxide increasing

Along with the temperatures, strong enough

For causation not mere correlation,

Think of the debts stashed away and spread

Over the world to the point no one

Knows how much they owe and to who


For the heart, consider this, Black youth

Gunned down in the street by the police,

Homeless veterans driven crazy defending oil

Supplies and the bankers’ bonuses,

Indian reservations, Appalachian coal towns,

Rust belt cities all ripening with drugs and neglect,

Or abroad, the sweat shops and workers

In Qatar perishing in the heat to build stadiums


For the stomach, consider this, the gulfs

Poisoned with algae if they are lucky and oil

If they have been blessed by spills,

The forests burned away and the greenery lost

To the ongoing march of deserts,

The species’ going extinct and the coral reefs

Filled with cyanide and calcified remains,

Life being redlined from every continental shelf






Live from Washington, D.C.



A republic perishes in between punchlines,

what was that? More laughter?

quick overdub it and layer the vocals

thick until we have enough mirth


Then we can move on, bring out new cards

for the table and the stage,

mention economic inequality under

the influence of the impression of a celebrity


No one laughs, no one cries, yawn and snore,

roll out the greatest hits,

wave the flag, let lose a fleet of eagles,

surely we can recover rights in syndication






Ben Nardolilli

Ben Nardolilli currently lives in New York City. His work has appeared in Perigee Magazine, Red Fez, Danse Macabre, The 22 Magazine, Quail Bell Magazine, Elimae, fwriction, Inwood Indiana, Pear Noir, The Minetta Review, and Yes Poetry. He blogs at mirrorsponge.blogspot.com and is looking to publish a novel. 

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