(LA,  June 1, 2020)

Angels watch their city burn

as the crowds torch

palm trees and cars, smash


storefront  windows

where  they once saw

their reflections blend

with people from down town, a twin


exposure that made them feel

almost human. Now, the broken glass

lies scattered and street lamps hold


a vigil for looters running off

with their bags and boxes

of expensive goods.  A stray cat


squeezes beneath the fence

finding refuge on a lot

overgrown with weeds, staggered

with piles of  brick and wood.


In the distance

protesters chant — I can’t breathe,

I can’t  breathe, even angels


on their hillside gasp

at the carnage and chaos stirred

by seven nights of revolt


Overhead, a condor flies;

his wings seem larger

than their own.  Spread wide

they carry the drift


of rain scent and rumors

from the grassland slopes;

the prong horn deer

have come back home Their coats


patched with the red shade

of Madrona bark. The black lyre

of their horns attuned

to the  billowing  rhythm of sage;

a field song, a wilder earth


seeking to recall

the best in us but our cities burn;

and we have  forgotten how

to  burn with light, lost

the soft choir of our tongues.

4 replies on “Babylon”

Such a tragic waste… You capture it well, Wendy.

It seems to me that there are two groups in these protests. There are those who honestly want to draw attention to the situation and the inequalities of treatment according to race. Then there are others who only see an excuse for breaking and entering and stealing and destroying. I do not believe that second group cares about protesting inequality at all. Sadly, the second group causes people to shut off the first group.


Hi Michael

Thanks so much for reading and commenting. I deeply appreciate it; and think you make a very valid point.

My best,


Dear friend Wendy,

Your poem speaks a somber mood we relate to as saddened hearts continue to stir in worldwide heartbreak. Thank you for sharing this on our Pub today. Continue to share talents from your pen. Always enjoying your work.



Thanks Jan

I deeply appreciate your thoughtful comments/perspective! This is such a sad time in our present day history. I only hope through prayer, tolerance and peace, we can all come together as a nation and make things on all levels better.

Take care,
My best,

Liked by 1 person

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