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Wednesday, January 13, 2021


by Jon Wesick

At Yalta,
while America wore olive drab
or Navy blue, the ad man wore a silk tie
and jacket of vicuña wool.
After Stalin left, the ad man spoke
to leaders of grounds fertilized
by a half-million dead from bullet,
bomb, and flame.
Words hurt!
How can we heal
by saying the Master Race
ran Death Camps? How about
the Predominant Genealogy
hosted Repose Resorts instead?
Appointing Adolf Eichmann
head of Health and Human Services
would be seen as a gesture of goodwill.
For effective messaging use these substitutions:
Not Antisemitism but Aryan Pride
Not National Socialism but Civic Communitarianism
Not Totalitarianism but Discipline and Order
Not Sneak Attack but Dazzling Advance
Not World War but Macrocosmic Contest
Not Holocaust but Extermination Engineering
With my strategy, you’ll win the War of Ideas,
I mean, the Altercation of Abstractions.

Jon Wesick is a regional editor of the San Diego Poetry Annual. He’s published hundreds of poems and stories in journals such as the Atlanta Review, Berkeley Fiction Review, Metal Scratches, The New Verse News, Pearl, Slipstream, Space and Time, Tales of the Talisman, and Zahir. The editors of Knot Magazine nominated his stories “The Visitor” and “A Story for the Rest of Us” for Pushcart Prizes. His poem “Meditation Instruction” won the Editor’s Choice Award in the 2016 Spirit First Contest. Another poem “Bread and Circuses” won second place in the 2007 African American Writers and Artists Contest. “Richard Feynman’s Commute” shared third place in the 2017 Rhysling Award’s short poem category. Jon is the author of the poetry collections Words of Power, Dances of Freedom and A Foreigner Wherever I Go as well as several novels and short story collections. His most recent novel is The Enigma Brokers.