Martin Willitts, Jr

America Asks About Justice

The world creeps along and we judged for 8 years
without moral authority,
like we were transporting bananas through fields of bones.
And we dare to ask about Justice.

Some church stating good intentions sends Bibles to cure AIDS.
Someone points out we must save the innocent
by bombing them for weapons they never had.
We stretch lazy across borders and ask about Justice.
The hypocrisy is packaged like corn flakes.

We made men stand naked on a small wavering box,
blindfolded as Lady Justice, a noose around their necks,
threatening to kick the box from out of under them
like we were haggling over the price of gasoline.
This is the Justice we hand out like purple thumbs.

We justify our actions like we justify someone else's poverty.
We do not investigate the infected mold of FEMA trailers.
We do not investigate contaminated food given to the School Lunches.
But we allow fraud to exist in non-bid contracts to War contractor
who build things that fail the soldiers.
Justice is a smirking recruitment poster.

We would rather teach children about values
from a book written by a man who was arrested
after violating three of those values.
This is justice.
We bring justice like bombing raids.
When enough damage is done,
there will be final assessments
of the success or failure
although the end result does not matter.
Justice will be served on a platter like empty collection plates.

If you ask me about justice we have offered these eight years,
will I have an answer that matters?
Will justice come to take me away for speaking?

Martin Willitts Jr's recent poems appeared in Blue Fifth, Bent Pin, Glass, Flutter, Coal Hill Review, New Verse news, The Centrifugal Eye, Quiddity, Autumn Sky Poetry, and Sea Stories. His tenth chapbook is "Garden of French Horns" (Pudding House Publications, 2008) ad his second full-length book "Hummingbird" is forthcoming from March Street Press.

(author retains copyright)