Do Not Read This Wall

1 May 2017
The caves etched with charcoal mammoths eating spears are long gone but the prophet with the writing stick still instructs on the wall of your local park: DO NOT READ THIS. You read it twice to be sure, before walking on to peruse older bulletins, pastel now in their sandstone rows – RESPECT Che Lives! To be thus is nothing – no-one ever messes with those. Newer scribes unleash red swirls of friendly fire: eat the rich Dig up ya dog erin is confused DARREN IS A SLUT. Disembarked day-trippers refuse to decode these dots and dashes, and retreat to the coach, walking sticks tapping elegies to older signatures: starbursts of wattle in the hatband, bullocks’ sad faces lit by lanterns on a pole.

Down the straight path, love is nudged by DESTRUCTION; donald Satan trump has the reverential space of hard news, while COPS KILLED JOHNNO!!! every decade. Beyond rosy joggers and a barking terrier (moulting, like its owner, from an overdose of city), a rebel finger salutes: O WET CONCRETE, HOW I DO LOVE THEE. At the very end, a mapmaker blows back incoming dust to chisel a telegram just for you: THIS IS NOT PEACE.

 


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