Category Archives: Poetry

Ode to the retired dictator, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons PresidenciaMX 2012-2018, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

By T.A. Akimoff

To the despots out there, the Jinpings, the Putins and the Lukashenkos

For the betterment of millions, you tread on to stay in your new clothes

And for your own piece of mind in a world where wealth is limitless yet vague.

An invitation to retire, to enjoy the spoils of your regimes, the money, the yachts.

Or do you fear the court of human opinion? In your dreams do you see the Hague?

What if we, the world, left you to your lavish lives, to live a little before your body rots?

What if we, the world, absolved you of the death and misery you inflict on us?

I hear Mariupol is nice this time of year, in spring, when the flowers bloom over graves

you opened in the frozen ground in winter, softening the earth with a bloody fuss

from your artillery and subjugated soldier fed not with food but lies and the blood he thinks he craves.

Oh, but I’m off the track here. What about you and your wealth and power and need

for control, for recognition; your empirical delusions that keep you awake at night in a solitary state of existence without the benefit of the big picture concealed by your Orthodox creed?

Hiding out in your Führerbunker watching shadows on the wall playing reruns of your downfall.

Is it hell you fear? Why? You’re just another in a long line of hellish outbursts come to crawl

through this world extracting death to keep your ego well-fed and plump as you feast on souls

who bear you up on bones and ashes of cultures, now limp flags, perforated with bullet holes.

Take some time away from the doorstep of oblivion and enjoy a sunny day at the beach.

Genocide is tough on the spineless, maybe buy yourself a bright, red car and set out on the road.

Or read a book or two instead of rewriting history and gaslighting the world with every speech.

Maybe take a few classes, re-education is all the rage these days, just take a light load

at the Xinjiang internment camps where you hold a million people against their will

to try to stamp out cultural differences for the good of the Communist party you bill

as socialism with Chinese characteristics. But which China are you referring to?

Because we can’t see over the great wall of misinformation and economic manipulation.

Maybe hang it up and go for a round of golf together and dinner and drinks for two

in the clubhouse in the intoxicating company of other despots without a worry, a care or a nation.

Allegory of the (Easter) Cave


The incessant babbling is wearing on my mind
as we stand here chained to the walls of this cave

The shadows dancing on the walls around us give rise
to all the speculation that a mind ensnared is capable of

And we pick and choose our favorite lies from puppet masters
and the Old Witness in our midst, clutched tightly to our chest

But if I stretch my neck far enough, I can see by the blackness within
that the stone was long ago rolled away, and you’re gone so long

The shroud is on our face, in our eyes, a sacred relic’s profane
turn as we covered ourselves in it in your absence

We’ll kill the next sun-blind fool who enters the cave
without realizing the stone was rolled away

We have nothing but dogma, but we clutch it close
to our breasts until it smothers us in righteous fervor

The few remaining shrubs that provide us oxygen are cut down
and made into brilliant execution devices

To further cull the wheat from the chaff, because
when we find that door, we’ll find it very narrow

And we wait for a sign, as described by a madman
on an island of loneliness in a sea of regret

These are not chains that bind us to these walls
they’re fears that grip us tighter than any alloy

And the greatest irony  of all isn’t that you came back
to the cave to show us the way out of the darkness

It’s that the cave is the first place we went to look for you
when all hope was lost and despair fell on us like rain

There is irony in the fact the stone was rolled away
we walked inside and killed the messenger

And chained ourselves to these walls to wait
for god knows what in ignorance and grief

And all this while, over centuries and millennia
the fact remains, the stone was rolled away

By Timothy Alex Akimoff