Thursday 7 March 2024

Deborah-Zenha Adams: Use Your Words

“It is an unimaginable tragedy,”
says the woman fluent
in politics, but not
in the tongue
of our nation because
surely every parent
imagines it.
Every teacher,
every child
imagines it
expects it
prepares for it.
“This district has been very good
            in training...on active shooters.”
in classrooms and hallways
every day all over
the country where
unimaginable is our way
of life and death.
Not unimaginable, but inevitable,
nothing we can do because
            “it's too early to talk about policies
            that might need to change as a result of this."
If that seems
untrue, ask yourself
            “…uniquely American problem”
I’m writing about here.

[Originally published in Dissident Voice, 2021]

Deborah-Zenha Adams is an award-winning author of novels, short fiction, CNF, and poetry, and served as executive editor of Oconee Spirit Press for ten years. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Roanoke Review, WELL READ Magazine, Dead Mule, Persimmon Tree, and other journals. You're invited to visit her website: