I confess

I need to sleep with blinders on

Until hypocrisy vanishes

Like folks celebrating Covid19 front-line workers

With pots and pans and spectacular military flyovers

Meanwhile those heroes go to war

Poorly armed

Against an invisible, overpowering enemy

Effusive gestures used like protective shields

Then, those same flag-flying individuals

Spit on and harassed our champions

Blacks, Asians, Latinos

When they are out of uniform

Still everyone swears after Covid19

“The world will be a better place!”

While whining about social distancing

and wearing masks

And shouting, “when can I get a haircut?”

I confess

(In the middle of this pandemic

with over a hundred thousand already dead)

To being perplexed at

Why we mobilized against racial injustice

Finally, and yet again

Over another senseless death

At the hands of the police

Why this death and why now?

Did we need names, faces and videos?

And what about all the others

Tucked into insignificant articles

In the Washington Post or The New York Times?

And, when Derek Chauvin is found guilty

will George Floyd’s death have mattered?

And like we’ve done before

In Watts, Newark, and Detroit…

(The list goes on and on)

Can we go home

And pat ourselves on the back

Because this time the protests

Made a difference?

I confess

To seeing our outrage orchestrated

By the left and the right

In this age of sound bites

With a reality star as president

As one side rants “Make America Great Again!”

And the other side screams, “Fascists!”

Like alternate realities in another galaxy

As we take sides on Facebook and Twitter

Smug at being righteous.

I confess

I have no answers

What has happened to us?

Sutera writes short stories, and fiction reflecting today’s crazy world, plays that explore relationships, and dark and acerbic poetry. She nourishes her passion by taking classes, attending seminars, and learning from writers she admires. She is published in Zest Magazine, The Kelsey Review, U.S. 1, and At Death’s Door, an anthology. She belongs to Room at the Table and the Princeton Writers’ Group. She lives in Lawrence.