Friday, October 11, 2013

Poem of the Week: Susan Scheid

Photo by: Kelsey Weaver        

When We Ruled the World

There we stood, dressed like Egyptians
or what we thought Egyptians should look like
from all our National Geographic magazines.

Wrapped in old curtains, jewels, tulle,
prancing around like we built the pyramids
while life in our sleepy Ohio town
rolled by on its way to middle America.

Men went to work at the refinery
spewing invisible gas and smoke in the breeze
while women ironed shirts and watched television.

But we did not notice the quiet turning
because we were too busy inventing pictograms,
enslaving younger brothers in our game
of carving scarabs and conquering the desert.

Ancient worlds so enticing because
the glossy pictures were clean-- 
unlike the paint peeling from too much sulfur,
the houses abandoned when factories closed.

There being no room for Egyptian princes
or pyramids in this Republican county
known for its prized cattle, corn and soybeans.

-Susan Scheid 

Used by permission.

Susan Scheid is the author of After Enchantment, her first book of poetry. Her poetry has appeared most recently in Tidal Basin Review, RequiemRose Red ReviewThe Unrorean, Bark! and the chapbook, Poetic Art. Susan currently serves on the Board of Directors for Split This Rock. As Artist-in-Residence at the Noyes School of Rhythm in Connecticut, Susan studies dance and teaches daily writing workshops for one week each summer. She lives in the Brookland neighborhood of Washington, DC, where she has been a community organizer for thirty years.  Susan helped open a community-owned grocery (Brookland Co-op Community Market) and also served on its board of directors.  

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If you are interested in reading past poems of the week, feel free to visit the blog archive.

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