the days of the watchdog

We have the full complement of the requisite barriers:
Barbed wire, barren landscape, unpleasant canines,
Stark towers with vaguely menacing turrets and gunsights
(Though they are remote, poorly lighted,
Perched high enough that I suspect they may be occupied
By mannequins or scarecrows),
And what cannot be attained physically
Is augmented by other means,
Breakfasts at mid-day, strenuous toil and a light dinner
In the blackest part of the night.
We tell our company this and that:
Half–and-quarter-truths, innuendos of some plausibility,
Outright truths as well (but told with the most outrageous leers,
In a tone which suggest that such things could never be,
And I have come to embrace Pilate’s question,
For truth is a singular thing,
Valid within the limits of one’s mind,
No more than a lower-case notion when butting up against those of others),
And so I tell myself that this is all something that needs to be done,
That perhaps there is no greater good than a certain regularity,
A certain order of things,
But I am unsettled by the memory of an episode some three days past,
Where one of this assemblage (I suspect the person in question was female,
But we keep our band well-shorn, and they are costumed
In rather shapeless and gray tunics
Which, given the lapse of time and the long intervals
Between our own re-supply, look suspiciously like our own garments)
Look in my direction with what fervor she could muster,
All but barking You! You will be forgiven none of this!
Which left me nothing but unsettled and mildly baffled,
All of which I find more unsettling still.


12 thoughts on “the days of the watchdog

  1. Sudden revelations blurted out are often as close to the truth as one can get. ‘ Eureka the truth.’ Is alwAys to be hoped for, unsettling as it usually is. In a world of lying politicians cynical PR machines whose mission is to make us all the same. Until someone shouts out. And disturbs the slumber.

  2. This new look on your blog came as a surprise!

    It seems to me that the days of the watchdog are done – now the people and events of the world are ogled by gaping carp with nothing to say. No one wants the truth, just the tweet.

  3. Hiya Kortas…it has been a while since I have dropped by, but what a gorgeous way to get reacquainted with your work. What I find works so well here is how the narrator infers to his surroundings and situation with vivid images and language, but doesn’t exactly outright provide concrete details….or truths, if you’re looking for a word to match the theme. This was a very smart decision on your part. On that level it is very successful.

    Here you were also very successful in painting a dystopian world: the barbed wire, the barricades, the stark towers with mannequin watch guards. What I like is how the narrators speech pattern is also a bit disjointed and out of place, by which I mean the pacing and arrangement of his thoughts feels as though it is from a different era or perhaps dimension that where he is actually existing. I found the contrast made for some delicious tension. Thanks for sharing this on the Tuesday platform!!!! Oh and viva la….

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