Distant Warning

Distant Warning

Gary Beck

May we never be called to judgment
for our deeds, or lack of deeds,
save by ourselves, beyond forgiveness,
sodden with toleration,
blind, with eyes that only see tomorrows,
that see our walled cities crumble,
that hear the piercing barbarian cries
as we yield our daughters to strangers.
We should see Rome around each corner,
a toothless lion squatting near the perch
of a moulting eagle, rattling his epileptic claws.