What We Hide Beneath Our Coats by Christina Butcher


Senseless and deeply

Disappointing, our cities

Are draped in gunfire.


The violence hangs across

Our shoulders



We wear it like a two-bit,

Woolen coat

Hard to shed amidst the rain

And the endless pursuit of power

And fame


And ‘unavoidable’ we say.


Over    whelming

Un       resolved

Un       civilized

Over    inflated

Some claim

In         conceivable


All undeniably



The bullets

Mark us, stain us red


Leaving our hands and faces



Like a shame-faced girl,

Hiding in the bathroom.


It seems we cannot. do not.

Will not. Stop it.


We simply

Don’t know how




So we lower our

Expectations, instead,


And zip our coats

Until the teeth catch on the slide


We turn further and further into the rain.


Content to stay dry

Here, somewhere


Inside the lining.