poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the tag “hunger strike”

near the end of the hunger strike

a victim of someone else’s selective memory
the sting wears away like a pinprick
left looking off into space
unable to wrap your head around anything

a hunger strike breaks out & rattles the world
prisoners locked inside dulls minds
their souls fluctuating
between today & a defective yesterday

true gut feelings at times underestimated
picking up on impossible scents
tightening when afraid
looking to escape into the next open field

november two thousand twenty-one
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

hunger strike

if they get away with murder
the city will ultimately burn down

the hunger striker lives in a bubble
broadcasted from the city center for all to see
like an eagle cam recording the brood

legal betting stands to make billions
regardless the duration
or the eventual outcome
of the extended televised reality

april two thousand twenty-one
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

hunger strike number two

she asked me to inspire her
but I was incapable
having become exhausted from a
fortnight of self-deprivation

you’re so boring she says
and I nod in agreement
anxious but not really
especially after agreeing
to give eating another try

I bought some grapes she said
but there are seeds in them
I hope you don’t mind

of course I mind I said to myself
for once beginning to understand
what it means not to be heard

july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

going hungry

I lay perfectly still on a fold-out cot
breathing shallowly
staring at a yellow light bulb
screwed into the ceiling

my hallucinations seem as real as flattened
homes in once peaceful neighborhoods
as sickening as makeshift hospitals
targeted and destroyed
as frightening as displaced little ones roaming
buckled streets inside urban war zones

exhausted and in a cold sweat
I’m visited by an attendant who takes my pulse
patting my forehead with a damp paper towel

she encourages me take a sip of water
my lips cracked and thin and stinging when
pressed against the thick glass

she rises to her feet and crosses her arms
looking at the black and white footage
streaming from the television screen

she picks up the tray of untouched food
and walks away
shaking her head like she always does

november two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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