Friday, September 12, 2008


The Author recently found a two-part poem that he wrote after 9-11.

He wrote it in 2001. He recently found it on an old back-up disc.

Here goes:

September 11, 2001*
By Rob Feightner©2001

The Skyscrapers that proclaimed the strength of Collective Man fell
in an all disaffirming flame.

Collapse upon collapse.
The call to an abject evil
transmitted relentless and unencrypted.

Cascades of scrolling names and passport photos.
Dense and defenceless.

The unmentionable odor of death offends the September night.

And all contentment is negated.

*Suggested by “September 1, 1939”, by W.H. Auden.


October 11, 2001*
By Rob Feightner©2001

Black birds of prey fly atop the night.
Their tiny red eyes flash death,
Quick. Remote. From centuries away.
Screen shots, grainy and grey.
Bulllet-point lessons from a digital demi-god.
Infinite justice above,
Instant martyrdom below.

(Oblivious, as always, to the gaunt faces of ambivalent subsistence.)

Flinty eyes peer across hardened lands and shifting sands.
Recast again a base metal mythology into an idol, brittle, hollow, but
Dazzling when the believer’s stare fades to blank.
Fan smoldering enmities to ignite the browsing rabble.

And howl again that old lie:
Rejoice in the dust of the Dead.
Partake freely of the Old Ways.

(We don’t trust you with the booty of the present. We fear what you will want in the future.)

Smoke still obscures the Shining City on the Hill.
The chasm remains, the deadly dust will not settle.

The Worst. The railers and the wailers.

The worst. Fat-jowled pharisees pound the pulpit and caw on the cable channel:
“(g)od, punish us back to piety.”

The Only Slightly Better. The clue less, the talking dead heads,
the pandering pundits ask: “Why Us?”

And the tenured class, spinning infinite loops of self-cancelling logic say:
“Who can say? Better Them, better Us?”

But what of We? We!
We who must be the affirming points of light.
We who must flash out wherever we exchange our messages.

We who must stand in the Centre and bring Them and Us
back together. And hold it, as We.

The earnest work must begin.
Ignorant armies must stand down.
Clashes by night must be deliberated in the light of day.
We must all live together
or die.
Die, Us and Them, in a bang, or a whimper.

Die in the old and damned lies,
Or live together in the Transcendent Truth.

And never to hear again that most apostate of prayers:

The innocent shall do the penance.
Our god shall be loved alone.

Rob Feightner


*Suggested by “The Second Coming”, by W. B. Yeats.