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A Dragon-Mouthed Lunatic

Oppression everywhere; people scurrying,
scurrying away from a lunatic,
a dragon-mouthed lunatic drunk from a cocktail of blood.
No one is safe;

safety is old and abandoned;
no, crushed,
ground to a dusty pulp,
by its steel-ripping claws, terrifying,

the rocks tremble and fall a splitting fall.
Soldiers hooves thudding,
raging boots with teeth as a saw,
the walls yelping cracks,

fretful horses whinnying and waking sleeping nights,
and frozen people scaling through clapping windows.
Turmoil wreaks the peace of peace,
towns beleaguered by red-eyed khakis with guns in hands,

bullets flying with lightening speed,
burning the streets,
freaking out, the rattled nocturnal air smokes smoke.
Broken fleshes everywhere falling like chilled dumps,

melting cell by cell.
What a nation!
A saber-toothed bug is on the prowl,
drilling blood in the marrow of freedom; feeding notorious fear,

shredding the flesh of voices to a broken silence.
Brutality roams the street, terror in knightly legions.
A government - a dragon-mouthed lunatic - the dregs of humanity
in a convolution like a dog wagged by its tail.

Oh Nigeria, when will life be life, and not terror?
When will swords be sheathed away in their scabbards?
Guns in their hosts?
Never, never, I hear;

your voice writhes life with furor of terror.
You are an unchanging terror
sewed up in oppression of them
in cottages so lowly, people so voiceless.

A government thrillingly treading on injustice wide plains
while stigmatizing justice as a sprawling dung.
Democracy is supposed to taste as a sweet nectar,
but this democracy swings brutality like a grim reaper.

Style / type: 
Free verse
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
How was the beginning/ending of the poem?
Is the internal logic consistent?
Editing stage: 


You have some excellent line that are made less powerful due to your structure.

I like the use of punctuation but believe you need to consider how a line affects the flow.

As a general rule:

- Semi:colon - hard pause
- Comma - medium pause
- end of line - soft pause (think inhale)
- Period - stop

With that in mind, I am going to recast your first stanza in a way that flows better for my reading:

Oppression everywhere; people are scurrying,
scurrying away from a lunatic,
a dragon-mouthed lunatic drunk from a cocktail of blood.
No one is safe;
safety is old.


I did remove the word "for" and the comma preceding it. I feel this is a statement and I wanted it to be stronger, I wanted to feel it as a judgement and a warning.

These are my thoughts. You, as the poet, must review and decide if anything is valuable. Critique should never be criticism, merely dialogue.


Jonathan Moore

Thanks Pugilist. I'll consider your suggestions.


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