Saturday, November 2, 2013

Death Rainbows

image borrowed from bing

Death Rainbows

“Within the soul lies a rainbow
of many colors.”--Anonymous

The magnificent mural appeared
in my frenzied midnight dream, 
a hundred feet tall & a block long,
on the once bare wall of a 
Middle Eastern prison, whirls of 
barbed wire a tiara across the top,

depicting the New Millennium Crusades,
the prophetic 100 Years War, Banksy-like
figures in military gear, carrying AK-47’s
with banana clips, shotguns with over/under
barrels, bandoliers of brass shells
criss-crossing combatant’s chests,
thousands of gunmetal gray smoking
barrels carried by troops, freedom fighters,
jahidists, revolutionaries, surrounded with
clumps of Muslims wearing Islamic head scarves
held on with blood red head rings, mouths covered,
angry eyes flashing, white robes stained with
plasma-red puddles,

men in marlin teal turbans & taxi-yellow thobes;
women & girls running, falling, being trampled
in dolphin blue berkas, dark plum kaftans, &
raven gold hijab scarves,

squadrons of eagle & tin can gray jet fighters
spraying midas gold & mandarin orange tracer
shots into crowds, ensigns, children, pets,
tearing ragged holes in several flags that
covered, wriggled around, belted, bordered
the chaos, great neon swathes;

America’s red, white, & blue stars & bars
cropping up the most, leaping up between
Israel’s cobalt blue stripes streaming above
& below the Star of David, and Palestine’s
china-red wedge intersecting with the three
horizontal stripes of cosmic black, judda-white
and rainforest green, adjacent the terrible
twosome--Iran with its triple stripes of green,
white, & redfish, and in the pristine white center
twin scimitars to each side of a column with a
red condor on top--Iraq sporting its three stripes
of red, white, & green, with jade green Farsi symbols
in the central whiteness,

Lebanon’s flag, double-striped, with cardinal red
upper/lower bands & the tree of life in its ivory center,
rainforest green leaves & oxen-brown trunk/branches,
perforated with tracer rounds, alongside the angry
ensign of Afghanistan--a trinity of vertical stripes,
gulfstream blue, Mars red, & shark teal green, with
its thick ornate crescent moon under a proud mosque
in its center,

and oddly, toward the right side of the mural, thrusting
malevolently out of a midas-gold sun, waved the
flag of North Korea, made up of ironic mocking
avalanche blue borders top & bottom, & thin white
lines framing the bloodshot red center, with its
flaming red star in a virginal white circle that seemed
to blink with some kind of radioactive energy;

beeswax yellow explosions rimmed with Texas orange
edges dotting the wall like deathly popcorn, like
blossoming lethal mushrooms, and yet miraculously

rising out of the blood-soaked chaotic center of this
street art masterwork was the huge figure of Christ,
on a mountain top, above the strive, loving arms
spread wide like the behemoth statue of
the Redeemer in Rio, cheeks streaked with 
a stream of blood tears, stigmatic wounds weeping;

awakening like a drowning man struggling up
from fierce deep fathoms of colorful grief, & as
I gulped bubbles of violet steaming oxygen, 
I immediately heard the soft beating of hope, 
of dove’s wings fluttering outside in the darkness;

beating back the bastions of dun despair, I rushed
to the sound, raising the window and inviting it in,
and standing there bathed in white light, still
I could distinctly hear the distant flap of many more
wings, & I couldn’t be sure if it were a flock of doves,
angels, or hawks. 

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over on dVerse Poets Poetics

Would you like to hear the author read this Colorful poem to you?


Anonymous said...

What an intense dream Glenn. I especially liked the question of what kind of birds they were at the end. Exquisitly done. >KB

Claudia said...

death's tough...doesn't go down well...ugh...war and battles def. have their own color spectrum.. love how you build in the flag colors as well... it's a tough piece glenn but really excellently written

Anonymous said...

The trouble of the Middle west is well engraved in your words. And the inclusion of North Korea was a drastic change in imagery.
You have used colours brilliantly, especially in defining the flags of the nations.
A powerful dream, touching on controversial subjects. The ending is perfect. You created an environment of the true picture of the modern world. Politics, religion and wars- a mess of destructible power.

Brendan said...

A glut and gout of colors punning wonderfully on national colors, colors of difference and exception, yet all from the same crayon-box. Hallucinatory and sploogy. Loved it.

aprille said...

breathtaking. What a creation, and all those colours spining and spinning and ending up white...

Graeme Cooper said...

Love this. Awesome (in the proper sense)!

Anonymous said...

Full of shock and awe(someness). Death rainbows is the perfect title.

Beachanny said...

Wow - now that was intense - more than a dream, I would think a kind of apocalyptic precursor or warning. Very thrilling use of colors!
(just a note but I think you meant Banksy as the street artist - though something may have auto-corrected that word on you.)

Glenn Buttkus said...

Nice catch, Gay, "Banksy" it should be; slipped past me.

Heaven said...

What a dream - but what hope to see Christ rising from that muck of despair and chaos ~ Hope, let the window bring in more light ~

Powerfully written Glenn ~ said...

Intense and breathtaking, altogether. WOW!

Brian Miller said...

a flock of doves or def touch on many of the issues in our world that bleed well beyond just color....i would like to think it is a bit of a of an apocalypse that hopefull we can find our ways through....

Anonymous said...

What a deadly rainbow you've painted in disturbing detail, Glenn. It was even more powerful read aloud. I feel the image of Christ's loving arms and the flutter of doves' wings brings hope in the midst of violent chaos.

Marina Sofia said...

Ah, what looks like doves often end up being hawks... a powerful piece, not easy on the mind, but necessary. I was also amused to see we both used the same image!

Mystic_Mom said...

Well THAT sat me back in my chair - well done my friend. Well done.