For Every Eclipse, A Contradiction

Madeline Lane-McKinley


that day when the Proud Boys
showed up to fuck with
the Jewish socialists who
showed up for Palestine
the anarchists who showed up
for Palestine
the queers & everyone else
who showed up for Palestine
that day when the Nazis drove to the city
with Israeli flags on their Ford F-250s
that day when the liberals cried
then paused to describe their tears
—the story of 40 dead children
the way it is but it mostly isn’t
the reality of thousands of dead children—
as if the numbers did anything at this point,
as if to be measurable
could make some difference in hell
—40 against thousands, a couple hundred against
a million, one history against another history
& all the stories
of all the dead children & so on—
as if it was an unbroken scale
as if to be broken meant once being unbroken
as if the unbroken could be otherwise
the broken mirrors
broken mirrors
as if we knew which mirrors those are
tomorrow & tomorrow, more stories with names
stories without names
more photographs
photographs photographs photographs
photographs measured against other photographs
photographs said to be of some not others
photographs that are of others but not them
photographs photographs photographs
as if more could prove something
that can’t already be seen
then they pause again from tears
to post images of the shadows
of a solar eclipse
but soon it will be different
maybe, I guess,
that day when some will tell the story of what they did not say


Madeline Lane-McKinley is a writer and teacher based in Portland, Oregon. She is the author of Comedy Against Work: Utopian Longing in Dystopian Times (Common Notions Press, 2022), and a co-editor of Blind Field: A Journal of Cultural Inquiry.

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