The subcommittee
            will hear testimony of

bubonic guinea pigs
international bodies
haphazard exterminat –
                                    ion

The cloud would descend upon a village or upon people
The cloud seemed to be made up of small particles

                                                                                 blood-tinged rain
I would compare it
                         to offering somebody a cigarette
                         such as the one I now am smoking
                         and giving them the finger
                         of suspicion

the leaf samples were indeed leaf samples
the water samples were indeed water samples
                                                                                 First village: pain
                                                                                 Second village: pain
                                                                                 Third village: children
                                                                                 Fourth village: children

        these casualties and deaths of babies and whatnot

I see the yellow light, Mr. Chairman. Does that mean I must stop?
       May I have a few minutes to get the slide machine organized?

a yellow water flowed from their bodies
                                                                    of evidence

            the slide machine does not appear to be working

scales fall
from a blue-black cloud
and yet the public yawns
                                              The blue-black cloud is filled with flame

             [a slide presentation was shown] about bleeding

I have seen skeletons carrying skeletons

                                     [Whereupon, at 4:30, the subcommittee adjourned]

 

 

 

 

Kristin_pictureKristin Fitzsimmons is the author of the chapbook all these empty bone bowls (Dancing Girl Press, 2013) and has most recently been published in Gloom Cupboard, Sugared Water, and Nice Cage. “The subcommittee” is an erasure poem created from the U.S. congressional hearing on “Yellow Rain” from 1981.

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