David Elsasser has co-hosted the Saturn Series Poetry Reading for seven years. He has exhibited his photos of New York poets reading their work. His upcoming poetry chapbook, Last Call, will be published soon by Poet’s Wear Prada Press.

In protest of the Chinese Government’s South Street Seaport exhibit

David Elsasser - 5/06

Thank you silent men
your shed skins illustrate
globalization dissolves difference
but something’s more sinister
than Cheshire smiles suggest.
Sorry I won’t see your
body politic revelations.
You’re too sanguine for me
sinews of cooperation
flexed in laminated ease –
you two high-fiving,
is it good governance
or good riddance you salute?
You thumbing a ride
is it to melting pot
or glue pot you go?

Air of executed men
I fear your gallows giddiness.
What pitiful plea bargains
your hides bought.
Murderers in the flesh, maybe
but you, your meditative stare
recalls Falun Gong. And you,
breathless shout forever sealed
did you sound freedom’s call?
You with tireless climbing step
you look Tibetan.
Cares gone with epidermis
you all look lighter
if suspiciously good humored.
So what portent
your ghoulish second coming?
Is it less mayhem you signal
or just a clever scheme
to stash the bodies?