J.B. Mulligan
Bustle and Disaster

Photograph by Michael Moreth

The world is always in crisis, but holy crap, we've got stuff to do.
The dog wants water, then walking. The bills cry out
from their house atop the bookshelf. The coffee will finish
perking in a few, and demand a dollop and a sip, a shiver and a sigh,
and another day will pour over the lawn and weeds of our lives.
Who has time for a crisis?
                                              We feel, briefly, for the wounded,
nod in quick prayer for the dead and their marble-eyed children
looming like scarecrows nearby. Our decency pulls at us
and we nod and agree and pull away to do something.
Good will is never enough, and is all that we have
please take it, and a check or a deed on occasion
tells us we could be better if we would, somehow.

The crises roll on like waves, and the small busy birds
on matchstick legs go in and out a-gathering, the sun
spills ungatherable diamonds over the torn-apart sea
and the crushed past of the sand rises another little bit,
lifting the bustle and disaster and the moving of things.

Detail. Click for full image.