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Thursday, August 18, 2011


by Maria del Fabro

 Gang member executed in Texas for double homicide
--Karen Brooks (Reuters) AUSTIN, Texas | Wed Aug 10, 2011

Martin, I was doing the laundry last night
and I said to myself you’d better check that list
the list of executions
just in case there is one I missed
the death machine moves so fast
I can hardly keep up
with the poetry

I am sorry Martin it was you
all tattooed and scarred
with your short life story
Last night as I ate my shitake pizza
sitting at the big table with cheese
in my mouth
you Mr. Drug Gang
without family in the witness room
you took the injection

I hope the guys were banging on the bars

You refused a last meal
took your visitors off the list
and didn’t take a call
I think you feel better now
If there is another place
Martin, ask for my friend Louise
she got there just before you
she likes her martinis really really cold
she’ll understand

Martin, you were
created in the image of the tattoo on your arm
the devil eating the brains of Christ
Was anybody home?

Author’s Note: I am currently writing a poetry project entitled An Eye For An Eye.  I am writing a poem for each person executed this year (thirty up to this minute). There is another man scheduled to die this Thursday. I plan to continue writing these poems until there is no more material. My interest is in humanizing the offender. In several poems I include their last two acts of freedom: the selection of their last meal and their last words.  I have written 15 poems so far.  In truth, I do not send my poems out too often, but I have become radicalized over the issue of capital punishment and so I am sending all of these  poems into the world. If has been a very interesting project on many levels.

Maria del Fabro
is a clinical social worker in private practice. She has had several poems published over the years. The most recent were written in translation and published in Carpe Articulum