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SECTION FOUR

A METRIC CON

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After Shock


Post fraud,
scandals,
and greed,
where will we go
and who will lead

When what is truth
is a topic discussed,
the brink of ruin
is an edge
that’s brushed

If the unbelievable
is reasonable and frequent,
discussions default
to links delinquent

Mistrust is impulse
for grifters it assists,
as counterfeit hints
help pillagers persist

Spilled thoughts
spark drama in estates,
by careless charges
spewed steady
to bait

Cues press clans
to push back, 
urging gossip
with no appetite
for the facts

Conjured incidents
grip cycles and pages,
selling a circus
to distract
from stale wages

Thresholds devolve
with traditions burned,
raising tensions
from what a clown discerns

This era will
be remembered
by its dusk;
a passing darkness
in the shadows
of trust

We give, they take
in the shelling
of our spirit-
after shock
when the vulnerable
will feel it

 

 

Forces

Forces implore us
to publicize our private,
streaming a river
of narcissism that’s stylish

Forces reduce us
to useless end-users,
in coils we’re collected
across digital unions

Forces contort us
to distort simple choices,
powerful yet voiceless
as combatants act boisterous

Forces enrage us
to take refuge in pages,
with context shrinking
in cartels of stages

Forces coerce us
from vaults to movements,
in compiling concerns
or rallying the disillusioned

Forces outsource us
crossing seas to cut lines,
bottoming a balance
to tilt tops of the times

Forces divorce us
for games of fixed races,
riding polls and swings
inside battleground spaces

Forces exploit us
for converted restraint,
measuring an impact
by the lack of debate

Forces force us
to divert off our courses,
in a con for followers
through an elegant performance

 

 

 

Cost Defective

With ambition for profit
there’s loss of what’s pure,
greed is a disease
few want to cure

Mass exploitation
for stacks
and for margins,
strips limits
during downturns
and bargains

Battered units
are churned without care
for the prosperity
of the fiscal year

Spreading thin
swells risk of leverage,
purging industry
for investors’ pledges

Ethics are bypassed
to gain more,
scorching plains
from the sky to the core

Coded formulas
color cells gauging balance,
pricing values
in declarations of talents

Esteemed staff
are tagged void
by their wages,
so the trusted
are whittled in stages

While insecure captains
helm ships toward a doom,
they collapse trust
and lose support
of the room

Setting targets
heists morale
from cohesion,
if tough economics
purge logic from reason

Enterprise attracts
nodding heads,
accepting rhetoric
despite the message it sends

Merged measures
stain schemes of pursuit,
slanting scenes
so insiders can loot
 
This trade off
floods fronts
with lost herds,
surfing currents
administrations defer

There is exile
among laboring trees,
they’ll pick and sell you
like fruit that hands seize

The players become wine,
while the rest
dry in the sun;
with no raises for raisins
on vines filling funds

 

 

 

Excess Denied

A crystal castle
with a diamond door,
golden trim
and a platinum floor

Countries are clubs
where access is privilege,
is this done for vanity
or the good of the village

The driveway is far
from the black of the street,
and only with security
do the two ever meet

Hedges scale tall
for private domain,
securing a coldness
and concealing a pain

Oppression is broad,
stunting resistance,
in a decree from the top
for dissolving persistence

Idols are promoted
for mobs to admire,
so deceivers can sling
agendas of liars

Institutions decline
as systems are poisoned,
when rackets spread quick
in appointments anointed

In a crippled capitol
with chambers of law,
miners fill lobbies
until walls are chipped raw

Liberties crumble
for the excess of a few,
denying the rights
long granted to you

 

 

The Skeptics and  The Believers

A scientist argues with a congregation,
one preaches theory,
the other elevation

A warlord smirks envious at a saint;
two soldiers
through faith and fate

A doctor compares notes with a dealer,
both treat misery
as a temporary healer

A journalist competes with a pundit,
setting a narrative
so operations are funded

An athlete is critiqued from a seat,
ignoring the sacrifice
in opposing defeat

A leader battles the corrupt,
decimating borders
the obstructer constructs

A hero finds purpose in a villain,
pursuing missions
by the wishes of the willing

 

 

World Wide We

Zeros and ones
in a digital parade
expand the arena
curiosity has made

It is rare to exist
in one sphere of persona;
we glow via pixels
in a clouded corona

There’s enrollment
to a collection of tribes,
sketching style
of how to live lives

Social then hidden
for the sake of position,
reaching for traction
in tirades of fission

There is swiping
in sequence for envy,
sharing life
as much as it can be

This race for reaction
is a crowded sport,
stoking boasts
by apostles of support

Reports break
and speed into sights,
in an outrage
of trivial gripes

Episodes are tailored
to rev up metrics,
crashing forums
filled with eccentrics

Real is claimed faked
if it flows against message,
as if evidence is enemy
when vetted or tested

In these coves
bounce reinforced beliefs,
blurring reality
by satellites of a feed

New advances
sketch orbits inexact,
in soft webs
that forever entrap

 

 

Fuck These Numbers

Wholesale and retail
import worship of detail,
where success taxes things
that aren’t real

Corporations aren’t people
and don’t care who you are,
they’ll pitch you as hard
as profits require

Cataloged investments
bleed on a sheet,
where brackets gas idols
hijacked by the elite

Prisons house circuits
that never let go,
where fees from offenders
finance the show

Hospitals serve us
as their marks,
stacking paper
of costs in the dark

Education saddles students
with long debt,
endowing courses
careers must offset

Brittle systems
veer without say,
skewed as we’re screwed
every minute of each day

Surveys determine
angles for a cause,
employing correlation,
for prejudice laws

While deficits and curves
appraise worth,
none of it matters
in a carriage or hearse

Aging and reflex
swap purpose for pain,
fuck these numbers
and the constraints they contain

What helps us shine
has no value to grasp;
love, passion,
respect and class

Take your metrics,
that blueprints erect,
for a hundred monuments
the conservative perfect

Live for your circle
and not by equations,
cherish what’s around you-
the undefined and amazing