The Works of Oil: Poetry

One day,I saw a homeless man
tear a hole in the 
facade of the city

With emaciated arms,
he tore down the 
shiny, modern vestige
and revealed the black
grime beneath
Then I spied 
an anorexic
walking with an I.V. pole

Black liquid hung
in the bag and
cringed against the light
I asked her
what it was

she said cheerfully,
"It's the cheapest
energy there is."
Two blocks further,
I saw a fellow
in a shiny Armani suit
lugging barrels on each
shoulder with a grin
that was half pain,
half snide

His suit pockets
bulged so with money
that it trailed behind
him like crumbs

"Heavens, sir!"
I exclaimed,
"Why do you tarry so?"

"It's my oil, you see.
It's the cheapest fuel
there is."
I finally reached
the subway,
I spied multitudes
blocking the doors,
holding bags of
corn and oil
and coffee beans
Faint of health,
they labored 
just to move

I exclaimed,
"Where are you all going?"

"Towards the
Fast Food Station,"
they said in unison,
"It's the cheapest
food there is."
And in the distance,
I saw the ocean,
once a pristine blue
now dark as if the sun
were made as sackcloth

People along the beach
fell to their knees in
mournful lamenting,
there was no ending
to their cries

"My God,"
I shouted
"What has happened?"

they sobbed,
"It's the cheapest
wake-up call there is."
I looked behind me,
half afraid to gaze
upon a pillar of salt

I saw the woman 
lying there,
dying on the ground.

A trail of dollar bills led
to a square brick wall
marked thirteen times
with the words
"In currency we trust."

And the homeless man
stared at the multitudes,
Lunesta pills at his feet,
holding a sign that read
"Will work for oil."

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