Around the World

Ruminations on Picasso’s Guernica

How quick the damned

of Guernica

try to flee the asymmetry

of casualty

and the fire’s opened mouth

masticating at their jagged flesh,

how congruent the geometry

of one hundred thousand pounds of explosive ordinance

tessellating into them

like bread,

leavened with yeast and soured with corruption,

being thrown into a crowd

eighty years away:

arms outstretched, salivary glands

churning, waiting for what must enter the mouth—

how quick the mashed bread

snakes through an esophagus

into a deflated gut,

as fast as photons

travel from the floodlight

to the banner of the Ayatollah.