john sweet


the numb hands i understand
and the feeling that
pure sunlight is more important
than oxygen

a third choice somewhere
beyond the cliches of
god and godlessness

color and form
but always this nagging doubt

always the knowledge
that art will never save the starving
or the butchered

think of the crucifixion
of st. dismas

think of the word genocide
or of what it means
when it can be defined by example

and what are the differences
between being an american and
living in america?

how many times will the
bleeding horse die and for
how many empty causes?

the truth is simple

no one speaks of witches anymore
but there is
still this need to burn

there is gorky in 1948
and rothko in 1970 and then
all of the years in between and
all of the ones that come after

history as a house reduced
to grey ash and empty space

our fathers' bones where
we left them

Date of Birth: November 27, 1968
Location: Endicott, New York
Occupation: State Worker
Publications: Alba, Painted Moon Review, Small Spiral Notebook, Arsenic Lobster, Pierian Springs, PW Review, Joey and the Black Boots, Blue Monk Press, Big Lick Literary Review, Double Dare Press, Stirring, etc.
Books: approaching lost (2002, Via Dolorosa Press); mapping the room of murdered children (2002, Black Hoody Nation)

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