Beauty is magnetic until the poles

Reverse, and all that energy backs up

And forces Itself in the opposite direction,

Filling us up with shame and sickness.


Then the ascetic holy man dynamites

The sculptures he used to pray before.


And the spurned lover tosses acid

On the beauty queen, his former wife.


And the novice painter, maddened by her master’s

Gift, slashes x’s in his canvas with a knife.


And the outdoorsman who used to love

The Appalachian highlands makes a deal

To blow the insides from a mountain

To efficiently extract some gas, and kills

The ancient beauty of the verdant,

Untouched holler his company stole it from.


I wonder how he sleeps at night, killer

Of beauty, murderer of life. He should

Watch that online video of the West Virginia

Man whose county has been fracked.

How beautiful the drinking water is, tumbling

From his kitchen tap. You can’t even see

The methane pouring down unseen, inside

The stream until he strikes a wooden match

And extinguishes it inside the flow to produce

A mushroom cloud of orange flame that bursts

And sizzles in the air he steps back from, shielding

His children, dazzled – as anyone would be—

By the beautiful vision of burning water.