Kings Bay Plowshares- a poem

cards.jpgBy Kate Foran

Dissent without civil disobedience is consent. Philip Berrigan

Our friend Mark sits in a jail cell again
and I stand in the lunch hour line
under fluorescent lights
at the post office with my toddler
to buy a stack of pre-stamped postcards,
the only kind acceptable to mail,
written only in blue or black ink,
no stickers, glue, glitter, or pictures,
no letters or packages.

I will scrawl a note to Mark to thank him
for prayerfully crossing
onto government property
at Kings Bay, Georgia
with six other gray-headed Catholic activists,
to hammer on a nuclear warhead and spatter it
with their own blood.
Let the record show, these seven, at least,
withdraw their consent.

Something about the waiting here or the lighting
or the crowd or the tall counter and the cool,
slow handling of the transaction
by the woman behind it sends
my 2-year-old into a panic. Does she think
we’re at the doctor’s office and she’s going
to get a shot? She clings to me, crying into
my shoulder and I carry on with my business,
crooning, “You’re safe. You’re safe.”

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