Poem for the Second Inauguration of President Donald J. Trump

 

Where shall they hide now, the merchants of death,

Who cloaked our eyes and robbed our throats of voice,

Who muzzled minds and sought to gag our breath,

Who in the blood of innocents rejoice?

To whom shall they turn, depravity’s elite,

The dream-smashing mobs, despoilers of youth,

Now that their toppled gods are obsolete

And die in darkness at the dawn of Truth?

Against what social order shall they now inveigh?

Against what form of right and good renew their fray?

 

They had their century, now we have ours.

They had their heaps of human skulls and bones,

Their killing fields, their camps, their prison towers,

Their burning cities with their n0-go zones;

They had their vision of mankind made brute,

Enslaved by lust and bound by envy’s chains,

Deprived of faith, of reason destitute,

With poison coursing through their state-owned veins;

They had their sunless century of black and grey,

Their millions dead, their glut of debt they can’t repay.

 

They had their century, now we have ours.

Their purchased poets and their empty bards

Will not ring in these times, but waste their hours

Repeating vapid phrases, vacant words,

Nor will their sages see, nor artists draw

The marvels of this age our toils brought forth.

Their crafts are guided by no form, no law;

Their sky wants stars, their compass lacks a north.

It is for us to sing, whom God leads not astray,

That we who never feared, old shapes of fear allay.

 

But one man pledged the fortune he possessed

To us who cried in silence and in vain,

Eschewing pleasure, wealth, foregoing rest,

His labors consecrated to our pain.

For we had been forgotten, we who keep

The dying groans of soldiers in our ears,

The dear immortal dead, who gently sleep

In time’s soft breast, beyond the flight of years.

And he remembered us, and looked on our dismay,

This man whose word, once given, he could not betray.

 

And we allowed to slip what made us free,

Let laurels wilt upon our heroes’ brows,

Confining to the drawers of memory,

Their virtues we in hollow words espouse:

Our fathers’ sacred faith we failed to live;

Our fathers’ castles we have left undone;

We learned to take, forgetting how to give,

And soon discarded all that they had won.

Until one man, whose aye was aye, whose nay was nay,

Stood by us, not above us, opening our way.

 

Nor did he scorn our ancient loyalty

To God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,

To blessed Mary in her royalty,

And Christ our King, regarding not the cost;

Nor did he blush to say the Holy Name

Of Him who by His Cross had saved the world,

But to that crown gave reverence the same,

In spite of every insult that was hurled,

That now we mark our time, our epoch’s dawning ray,

To greet, as one, the wonders of the widening day.