The Manchester Review
Dore Kiesselbach
Two Poems
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Assyrian Frieze

The good society is shown in 200 yards of narrative
stripped from foreign walls.
The fisherman faces fish in such a way
that they can be said to be equal.
Grain grows straight under a stone sun.
A victory procession is passing through the capitol,
castes and classes arrayed in traditional ways.
Distinct tendons guide horse legs.
Left to right the story flows
and thus our timelines too.
For those wishing to know the future,
the stone changes direction
and music plays where the docent
points out details and prisoners die.
Because with each drop of blood
the heads grow heavier
they’re carried away by hair
wrapped twice around the carriers’ wrists.
They should they have known better.
We should we have too.
Patterns in fabric worn by onlookers
on the far side of the avenue
can be seen through
the spoked wheels of passing carts.
Let us praise perspective and squares
with centered dots inscribed inside.