In: In the dawn of this new era

Sur: Surfaces a count, so counted on,

Rec: Wreck and reek opposed at arms

Tion: Shun the surety of deception,

And weep in the wake of failed insurrection.

The chirp of crickets

Melts into sweeps of fallen leaves.

Amid the color atlas of undressing trees,

(Confident, yet concerned) “If I lose, it’s rigged.”

Daylight by inches shrink,

Each day winter pansies wink.

As wrens and warblers begin their journey,

Their verse of farewell accompanies,

(Secure, yet increasingly nervous) “If I lose, it’s rigged.”

One, united sea to sea, more voters of alternative visions,

Young, old, all races, all souls,

Race to vote at mailboxes or polls,

Haunted by a whisper that screams,

(In desperation, hiding with haters) “If I lose, it’s rigged.”

Elections produce one loss and one win.

Like it or not, that’s the moment we’re in.

But “Martial Law” calls and incitement to insurrection

By a president, an ex-con, and a pillow man,

Has swamped the results of our free, fair election,

And into the People’s House they ran.

(In ponderous pout) “If I lose, it’s rigged.”

As white supremacists reign supreme,

In Wagnerian drunkenness their weapons wave,

Our eagle warps into a new meme,

Haters reveal the privilege they crave,

And fear white people are losing their clout.

That’s what all this is really about.

Neo-Nazis and racists are moved to tears

As they lose their most powerful spokesman in years.

In the quicksand of supposed political passion

They have staged their sick insurrection.

In: In the courts and the court of public opinion

Sur: Surfaces a challenged confidence in our democratic palm, not

Rec: Wrecked by wrinkles of imagined conspiracy, we

Tion: Shun the chaos and embrace the calm.

The People’s House in majestic peace,

The count confirmed, the era inaugurated,

The chill and fury of the year’s first season, 

Stands secure, democracy venerated.

Repetition of that distant basso continuo,

“Stop the Steal” when nothing was stolen,

Has issued our country a serious blow,

We may be bruised, but we’re not broken.

Today, the shadow haunts the siege.

20,000 uniforms confirm the inevitable,

The surrender of a flawed, fearful, ignorant liege.

Anger at masks and metal detectors regrettable,

A new era will be confirmed,

As we envision the great wren and warbler returned.

Naomi Hildner is a retired OPRF High School faculty member, English Division.

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