Attention(,) Whores
August 4, 2007
Mattaman McKearnee
August 7, 2007

They say we are the new-found prophets, and in that voice, God’s truth lives well.

From fearful swells and empty promises in clay pits of depravation, peasants rise. Their words are bold, unbattered, impregnable. They will protect. They will restore our dignity.

But I say: the voice is nothing without words to utter, and words are nothing if no ears hear.

Brandished knives, swinging in the morning air; shots that cap the cries of birds and ring with shouts of peace. The beginning is already at its end: reconciliation to the rhythm of the cracking guns.

Screeching mortars; gunfire that rips the peace of families in two, blood that overflows the banks of God’s own rivers. And wailing voices, thousands shaking in a febrile death, limp and useless. Words of peace as light begins to fade for profit: for profit. Lives erupt in vanity, and all is surely vanity.

We are writers of ideas, fact and fiction, the novel spaces of our humanity. God help us when we rest with epigraphs! God help us when all minds forget as quickly as the pages of a book snap shut.

Then ends the war when there is gold enough to split in two; we civilized nations broker peace with brittle black men, bleeding, soon to die. Else, the rattling guns and heart-bound bullets fall when one inglorious nation shouts no more for peace; they litter their own countryside as full as grass with corpses.

God help the useless rebels of our language, shouting war to hear their readers cry. Two-faced images that fire passion awake from their books; just enough for glory, fame, and fortune. Indifferent parents of souless, tortured words; they do not deserve to be called writers.

There are some, even, who have taken up the guns. They sing the songs of freedom that men have made their graves; they carry amunition on their backs.

God help me; God help me and my listless words.

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