Howard Firkin
The statuary was only ever made
of plaster in my garden and you turned
the sprinklers on. You watched it, unconcerned,
dissolving in a sodden, white cascade,
      and shrugged and said, "It would have rained one day."
Is this what happens when you haven’t found
new Romes to sack? You march to any village,
invite your mates to join the party, pillage,
and raze an unmapped hamlet to the ground?
      No mouse should die a lioness’ prey.

At least I now know how career vandals
      spend their leisure hours: practising.
You let your victims burn like birthday candles
      for just as long as your admirers sing.