Rex Lambert

 

Requiem for A Dream
 
                   for George Floyd
 
Today I wear
the white skin
I was born in
as a coat of
shame,
 
my equivocation
ebbing as his
knee
pressed on your
neck,
 
my colorized
inheritance
now truth
in black
& white:
 
your life’s
equivalence
to loot,
your breath to
burning buildings,
 
the bitter gall
of bigotry still here.
And my two brothers—
Derek’s Cain
to George’s Abel—
 
one alive,
the other dead,
a dream snuffed out
for justice in this
life.


The photo is from my character, a “ghost sailor,” in Wagner’s opera, The Flying Dutchman.

In 1973 Rex Lambert became the first poet in Arizona Commission on the Arts’ new Poets in the Schools program. In 1974 he left teaching for a long career in technical writing and acting. His poetry has appeared sporadically in print and online, and is anthologized in Poetry of the Desert Southwest (1973) and Southwest: A Contemporary Anthology (1977). Since 2005 he has been a member of Arizona Opera and Phoenix Opera ensembles, performing as a non-singing charactor actor in 24 productions—most recently La Bohème in January/February, before COVID-19 darkened Phoenix and Tucson Symphony Halls.

 


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