With Great Power

Station a guard by my mouth
to invigilate at the door of my lips;
with all your strength withhold me from
serrated words designed to incise,
deployed against targets deserving or otherwise.

Utterances are double-edged boomerangs
as lethal incoming as outgoing,
invisible vessels brimful with karma;
too, they stir embers in the dying fires
of all those whose paths we cross.

In any given mood, they or we might just be
laconic, holophrastic, taciturn,
unwilling to uphold the other,
to convert grimaces into grins.

Yet you never know: just by saying hello,
we might restore someone’s faith in humanity,
our casual speech revealing surviving
shards of goodness among a fractured species.

About the Author

Brandon Marlon is a writer from Ottawa, Canada. He received his B.A. in Drama & English from the University of Toronto and his M.A. in English from the University of Victoria. His poetry was awarded the Harry Hoyt Lacey Prize in Poetry (Fall 2015), and his writing has been published in 200+ publications in 27 countries. To view more of their work click below.