They started out as stone,
Iron and metal were later wrought,
For as long as history’s known
Humans have built, perfected, sought.
So many different years
And so many different kinds:
Physical – allay or ignite fears
Mental – reside inside our minds
Metal, wire, vinyl, electric, chain,
Barbed, plastic, wood … all binds
Boundaries marked for loss or gain.
To hold captive, to protect,
A dichotomy of use and need
Some a symbol of regret,
Some a symbol of great deed.
Names etched upon the surface,
Prayers pooled beneath stone,
Whether good or evil purpose,
It’s all people have ever known.
Nations, pastures, individual abodes,
Territory marked, boundaries, and seams,
Expected and accepted cultural codes,
Prison yards and white picket dreams.
Surrounded daily under such strain,
Manmade structures splitting the Earth
Mindmade too compart our brains,
Outside forces shaping from birth.
We can’t escape the links and posts
Splitting the land, splitting our senses
Even in death they guard our ghosts,
There’s no escape surrounded by fences.
© Donna M. Monnig