Saturday, January 19, 2013

"They Will Not Be Silenced"

The Arts


The Haunting of Tereus
By
Ric Couchman


And what has Tereus to say? 
Has he lost his tongue; 
Have words departed from him 
Who mercilessly took away speech? 
Can it be that he who was once powerful 
Now sits in oppressive filth, 
Hands down his pants scratching his rear, 
Idly playing with a stench-filled crotch, 
With chin on his heartless chest 
And twisted mouth oozing vile drool? 
Him who by rude force and brutality 
Shamed and disgraced innocence, 
Taking away the nightingale's song? 
Does he now seek gracious pity, 
Who of his own was withholding? 
Here in abject depravity he sits, 
Impenitent Tereus, past remorse 
And void of any inner fount of tears 
Because of a black and stony heart. 
Aged and helpless, rabidly hollow, 
Progenitor of a race whose essence 
Is cowardice in the guise of power 
And weakness masked as strength, 
Of the likes of David Albert Mitchell,
Demetrius, Strauss-Kahn, and Chirion. 
Speak then if you will, unrepentant one, 
With your own mouth indict yourself. 
What gained you from your plunder? 
Evaporated moments of carnal pleasure? 
What added you to your impious stature? 
You are silent, O creature of straw; 
Have you lost your tongue? 
Where now is your lusty bravado? 
Does fear now take its shameful place? 
The dismantling of purity you sought; 
The subversion of innocence you pursued, 
But unwittingly exalted them instead. 
And now by Fate forever venerated, 
They stand in judgement of you, 
Undefiled still, and still innocent, 
They will not be silenced - 
Jyoti, Philomel, the Sabines, Persephone, 
Annie P., Trisha, Lucretia,
Lavinia, the daughters of Leucippus, 
An endless line of those you violated, 
You and your despicable kind, 
Your ignominious and perverse deeds 
In the past in art romanticized, 
Masking who you really are - 
Base and cowardly and pitifully weak,
With no punishment, neither earthly nor heavenly
Fitting for your despicable crimes.
So then, with yourselves we let you live,
You and your loathsome kind.
What say you for yourself, Tereus? 
Have you lost your tongue?

[Photographic Art by Ric Couchman]