See the Fog
Have you seen the fog?
I mean the sea fog, the way it comes in
over the water like a cotton quilt moving slowly
but irresistibly toward us and downward
from a gray sky that drips cold and wet
but only in the form of the tiniest particles
of damp death.
When it comes close we feel the droplets condense
on the skin like a sticky dust or mist of paint.
It coats everything, covers everything, invades everything.
It attaches to everything.
It sticks to everything.
It encloses everything in a prison of clumped terror.
Life becomes overwhelmed with a fear
of all dreams lost, all hope lost,
a certainty that the soul dies before the body.
The sea fog is like fascism,
like parents killing their children,
like doctors and teachers and artists and
scientists being thrown onto mounds of burning print.
Like screams from hidden corners of the night,
like the cruel becoming rich, and the kind broken by poverty.
The fog thickens, becomes a sugary pudding, a paste, a glue
that stretches but holds everything together tightly
as though it were warm tar growing on people to become
a soft but insuperable prison of irreversible choice
caused by the hatred of others that floats abroad
like the sea fog of deliberate self-destruction chosen
as the means to pretend the source of the sea fog
is not the black slime of your own heart.
"It is better to hate than be hated" the sea fog
whispers as it brushes over your dying skin,
your dying body, your dying mind, your dying race.
I can't move. I can't breathe.
John F. Manimas, February, 2023
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