Same As It Ever Was
the strident chant of protesters
a plate glass window shatters
a million tiny pieces, glittering
under yellow street lights.
Muffled voices through bullhorns
helmets, gas masks, shields and batons
Pop! Pop! Pop!
clouds of tear gas, acrid, stinging
rolling down the street like a fog bank.
Panic ignites like a flame
ripples through the crowd
like a contagion
the sudden surge
everyone breaks and runs
down side streets and alleyways,
only to regroup
and do it all again
on another street.
The whole pattern
over and over.
From Northern Ireland to Tiananmen Square,
race riots in the burning cities of America,
the Antiwar Movement, Arab Spring
and Occupy Wall Street.
Same old wine, different bottle,
different players, same old game.