“Promenade des Anglais” by Frank Dullaghan

Frank Dullaghan


Anything can become a weapon—
an airplane, a truck,
the tongue,
the thought that proceeds
any of these. A gun.
You have no place to go
when this is over.
There is seldom an end
in sight, death
more often an ambush.

But when it is visited on us
like this, when it mows us down,
a false answer
to someone else’s question,
when it enters us
with hate, insanity,
perhaps we should ban all weapons,
let no one own a gun
or drive a truck,
let no aircraft leave the ground,
have all tongues silenced,
all thoughts hidden under a blanket
of drugs.

Or we could choose
to take our chances, hold hands
and walk the Promenade des Anglais,
watch the sea explode
onto the land,
our backs to the road,
our hearts out there climbing
into the sky,
for the time that we have,
the love that we have borrowed.

Poets Respond
July 17, 2016

[download audio]


Frank Dullaghan: “This poem responds to the Bastille Day truck attack in Nice, France. I wanted to respond to terror with hope, with the sense that there is still joy and love in the world.”

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