bangs and pops, in videos on screens
a number says something’s wrong
black writing: they had guns

you wince

a repeated trope:
men in black stand before yellow tape
in a bath, red and blue

supine bodies float on frames
guided somewhere, not here
as lights play pass in the street

you’ve seen this performance before
it always comes back; a man stands on stage
speaking to the world with his tie: blue, white, red

“it was them”

why the colors; why are
fear and justice painted in that tricolor?
maybe they’re the same

a man says we’ll be ruthless
the people nod their heads:
any means necessary

the numbers go up
as they do, your eyes get more tense
all you can do is send a red blink

did you hear?

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