We dismiss the images at our peril:
in the Sunday paper’s ads for games, Doom
and Assassin’s Creed. Muscle-armored
drab of the downtown theater’s poster
X-Men: Apocalypse, a battle-
bulked figure contemplating a Yorick-
like skull: Only the Strong Will Survive.

Only, we rationalize, entertainment,
but the subterranean truth of these
ubiquitous displays is that our gun-
deaths and never-ending war have become
a cancer on our soul, a Darkness
Disease killing our will not only to
keep ourselves alive but the planet.

Each empire carries the seed of
its destruction. I know that this rage
we secretly turn inward on ourselves
is telling us to die. Let’s release our dream
of redemptive violence and give
the heroes peace, call the armies home.
Wash with light this dark sickness from our eyes.




Thomas R. Smith



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