The arena turned in a moment
to a lynch mob, frothing, hanging
on the words of a “prosecutor” who parodied
his job for a spotlight and cheers.
Guilty! raged again and again – the crowd
inflamed by sentences honed
to razors – the truth be damned! –
She’s a witch and we know it – Salem shadows
spiraled up from the floor, ashy, dark,
trying to voice their warning. But blood
boiled up, blotted out reason,
the hounds of hate set loose,
howling for a victim. On the podium,
sneering, the man disgorged his bitter fury –
passed over twice! – and clawed back
the adulation he knew was his.
Catherine McGuire is a writer and artist with a deep concern for ecology and our planet's future. Her first full length poetry book, Elegy for the 21st Century, will be published in October 2016 by FutureCycle Press.