Tag Archives: Marshall County High School shooting

An American Trilogy

I don’t usually share my poetry, but guns are the exception to every rule. This trilogy was originally posted as images to my twitter account (@TheoloGOP) in June of 2015. (Those images are at the end of this post.)

Guns kill, but they do so much more than that. You can change a life without ending it. Today, I’m worrying about changed lives in Virginia Beach.

The Drill.

Listen my children and you shall hear
What to do should a gun appear.

Look to your teachers.
Their job’s to save you.

They will scream or whisper
what you must next do.

Find somewhere to hide, if the gun is still far.
(Just make sure you don’t leave the door ajar.)

If the gun is near, so is your end.
Lie low.
Don’t move.
Play dead.

American Make Believe.


Broken Windows.

Fire a bullet into a glass pane. It will make a little hole.
But radiating from that hole? A web of shatter…
Exponentially larger and more devastating to the whole.

Fire a bullet into a human being. It can end them.
But radiating from that death? A web of shatter…
Exponentially larger and more devastating to humanity.

Tens of thousands a year, here. Taken by the gun.
All of those stones dropped in the dark water.
Huge. Horrible. But only a whisper of the scream.
The scream of all those ripples.

The ripples survived the gunshot. The ripples carry on.
But don’t deceive yourself. We weren’t spared.

The Living. 

Eye Contact.

The person in your grocery store, struggling with a simple chore.
“It’s harder for me than it is for you. I got shot.”

The young person pushed in a wheelchair, by an older one they take after.
“I’m not as independent as you are. I got shot.”

The parents who spend holidays in a hospital, lavishing love on the unaware.
“Holidays are harder for us than they are for you. Our child got shot.”

The awesome lady at your workplace, inexplicably and forever single.
“I won’t ever marry. I was going to, but he got shot.”

Unspoken Communication.