I used to think the man in the modern city was in trouble.
For he had no ties to those he buried in ash and rubble.
And I thought of the man in the village,
but he too seemed lost.
For in exchange for grains and property,
Hapless slaves paid the cost.
So I looked to the tribes,
Asleep in peace underneath starry skies.
But even the sweetest of grandmothers,
Mutilated innocent teenage brides.
Then I looked to hunter-gatherers – egalitarian and free,
Hoping for comfort,
in what I would see.
But it was too late,
Their humanity was paid for and bought –
As they built the first temple,
And buried their dead beneath the rocks.
Edit: 4/25/14 – I just published a short follow up detailing the impetus and the meaning behind this poem.