Reader Poem — John Reinhart

John Reinhart wrote this poem in response to the September Poetry Prompts:

Not by works of law

Hammurabi hammered laws
sent from Shamash, the sun,
borrowed from Nature’s idea
of cause and effect,
retribution swift and severe.

Moses chiseled beneath the clouds,
delivered a list from his singed beard
and flaming hair, to direct
his wayward people home
to a land of clear borders.

The barons chartered a big bus
to run over King John,
a tourniquet to control his bleeding
power, to keep the citizens
from drowning.

Holed up for days,
a group of men penned pages
of form to water new life
on a dusty empire
to constitute independence.

In the middle of metropolis
the master gave a free concert
on a grand piano in the rain
as lightning bloomed on museum walls
turned inside out and the creation
of beauty of creation transformed
law to truth that sang rivers
to canyons as hawks nested
on piano strings that harmonize
thunder and violets, saplings bent,
not broke, rooted in music
that everyone sings.

Law is the wall that Romulus
built, that Remus defied, to demonstrate
the power of life over pitiful human will –
dams will always crack
while bridges sway gently.

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