Aum Ah Loka Ah Hung
Jah Sirocco Loam Shekinah Sirrah Sung
Slippers and Tea
Flippers and Thee
Hi Dee Ho / Hi Dee Hee
Tee Hee Tee Hee
Bless me Holy Father for I have pinned
thy priests’ performance to a document of sins:
from raping little children to enslaving Indians,
from enflaming witches, to left freezing street denizens;
a bejewelled hierarchy,
women blamed and excluded;
the task overdue: Ask forgiveness — please the dead —
for doctrine of discovery, terra nullius, indebted payments
for lands and autonomy stolen, coloured citizens
fallen to a cross on one hand, larcenous sword of Jesus in t’other.
pray for the wind for the curtains that bulge at windows
breeze to cool the fevers of memory
More, you say, more…. Economy’s profit, the crop tall and green;
but mono-, not poly-, lone farmer on empty plain,
without bison or predaceous partners: no wolves, no bears —
no gophers, no hawks; fields of one plant, ahh Christ,
how’d I get stuck here, no neighbours, no helpers,
just me ‘n’ this bleedin’ time-delimited scheme?
pleasant little creek from the glacier’s tongue
meanders even froths through high meadow
tasting the soil its knowable limits
Pipe wrench and wires, screw threads and welds,
mechanico-industrial pumps roaring out dulled life, pitting
worker ‘gainst worker, race against race,
cis- against genders of any other;
theft division and greed engrained industry’s
employment, wage slaves the norm, boss above workers;
owners on holiday, counting their harm.
oh lord won’t you grant me…
a seat round the fire
In the systems of robbery blue notes drone, counterpoint
to a march of military gore — the ordinary scheme of things.
Jazz rocks through agonies of approved comportment,
belies the instructive stance, upsetting the conditioned woes;
unseating the ministers to the dance floor of doom, the generals,
the hireling politicians chanting choruses after chorus
where the blood red river flows.
sing the silk road sing the desert and mountains
horses and camels elephants and yaks
sings with the animals sings to the distant sea
oh hear the answers
not so funny;
all that piss pot
full of money.
Sort out the good ‘uns,
kill all the bad;
lever up the leavings
for the little buggered lad;
lever up the leavings
that the women never had;
lost it on the shore,
lost it in the war,
tore up the deed
to the burning store.
Philip Kienholz studied creative writing at North Dakota State University and received a B. Arch from the University of Manitoba. Publishing credits include a 2016 book, Display: Poems; two chapbooks, The Third Rib Knife, and Born to Rant, Coerced to Smile, as well as poems in journals: Whirlwind, Windsor Review, Greenzine, River Dhamma, Links, Poetry Halifax, Global Tapestry Journal, NeWest Review, Cutting Edge, Quarry, Atticus Review, Whetstone, Prairie Fire, Ecospeak, and Crazy Horse.