Journalism In Verse

An aerial view of temporary soft sided facilities under construction in Donna, Texas, April, 2019. The facilities will be used for processing, care and transfer of record numbers of migrants including families and unaccompanied children crossing the border illegally daily CBP photo.

It’s Currently Summer Here Where We Boil Our History

in Immigration/Politics by

              into pablum
              the temps in the tents
              are not all that
bad don’t they
come from heat
these warm body child
              actors – don’t you be
              believing their alligator
              tears: ping pong,
iPads, space
blankets, older ones
to change the babies’
              diapers. you’d like it
              here where
              the repetition of lies
has a rhythm
verging on
lullaby, the heart
             no longer breathing
             fierce. we’ve forgotten
             our true hardiness
zones, this state
already almost used
to 4b, maybe we can soon
             grow those Crystal
             Blanca lilies, look
             elsewhere for the black-
crowned night
heron. Breath comes
easier with that
              hummed refrain
              words out of
              reach. We can almost
not hear where they
will drop the next
tent city (is there room
              at Fort Snelling?)
              we can just about
             sleep
through the night.

 

________

Suzanne Swanson is the author of House of Music and the chapbook What Other Worlds: Postpartum Poems. She is a winner of the Loft Mentor Series; she helped to found Laurel Poetry Collective. Her poems have appeared in literary journals and the Land Stewardship Letter.

Photograph of detention facilities in Donna, Texas by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol.

________

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[New York Times]

U.S. Customs and Border Patrol
[Flickr]

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