Sean Murphy

What a Wonderful World?

I see trees of green, stoic in the setting sun, strange
fruit a shadow that shames Nature, unnatural, some rot
that blossoms inside certain men, a privileged pestilence
(in the dark sacred night),
like the perverse hope of hate, like anything other than love:
bad memories abounding as His Story repeats itself (He ain’t
me, at least)—a last long gasp of confused fury, at long last?
And I think to myself: what a wonderful world
these prayerful types fancy: the purity
(of a bright blessed day)
when a bleached Christ returns
to our corrupted earth, with blood and fire
to baptize the worthy and the right.

I see skies of blue and clouds of white sheets, but also black
Ks behind the eyes of gray men in blue uniforms, the streets
a stage for their St. Vitus Dance; blood on hands pumping gas
into the tearful eyes of brothers (and sisters),
muscle militarized—
and presumptively innocent of anything they might do—
in the service of protecting the mighty
frightened men who order their marching.
And I think to myself: what a wonderful world this is,
in the red and dry eyes of those whites.

Look: the colors of the rainbow, on flags and in crowds,
defiant solidarity in the name of what never was,
(we had a dream).
I see friends shaking, their hands cuffed as faceless forms
stuff them roughly into unmarked cars, b/c that’s how it’s done
these days, only now there’s a new democracy: anyone—
and it could be everyone—in their sights, naked of weapons
or clothes
altogether, empty of violence and filled with such unforgivable thoughts
of freedom, now…and I think to myself: What?
A wonderful world this never was.

How do you do?
How do you do
How do you do
I love you.
(It’s never enough
But it’s everything
We need; all we lack.)

I think. To myself:
What? A wonder
Full World.
Yes. I think
(to myself):
What a wonderful world.
Oh yeah?