On Tonight’s Program

Dan Albergotti

How many millions of faces are aflame, lit

by sickly blue flickers in prefab living rooms tonight

as canned laugh-tracks and empty sighs blend

with hoarse, insistent cicada drone? The laughter

is a moth flitting around a flame. The monologue

sounds like a catechism designed to save no one.

In other rooms they’re talking strategic targeting,

collateral damage, what no one will talk about tomorrow.

A washed-smooth stone lies on a riverbed

like a tumor lodged behind the left eye,

motionless, embedded, elemental.

Shouldn’t there be something we could do?

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