Instrument of atrocity


I am learning the language of objects. So, the kitchen knife

Scintillating before me: I must undo a thousand

Years of knowing what it can and must do,

And see it as steel, as inertia. I must unlearn

It purposes and desires, its thirsts, its cunning gait,

King Duncan’s end and many before him;

And instead embrace its precise and harmless form.

For the thing is without harm: only in redefinition,

Holding it and giving it purpose, is it made

A murderer.


As I might too, in my own way, be cut-throat

And thirsty for the salty taste of red along my fine

Clean sides, merciless; sometimes, when held, I too

Become an instrument of atrocity. Can I

Distract myself from these, the most delicious

Incidents, and render myself natural?


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