Guns and Roses

by IRENE FOWLER, Contributor

“This is the ultimate weakness of violence:
It multiplies evil and violence in the universe.     
It doesn’t solve any problems.”         

– Martin Luther King, Jr.


UPDATE: The state of Texas is sending home to parents of schoolchildren identification kits which they can use to fingerprint and DNA swab their children so in the inevitable event of more mass shootings in Texas schools, it will be easier to identify their bullet-riddled bodies. Irene’s “Blood Roses” seems more timely than ever.


Guns reveal themselves as being central to white supremacy…….Until Americans fully understand and reconcile their past, they have little hope of addressing the epidemic of gun violence in America today.”  – Thom Hartmann

The origins of the second amendment are steeped in the overriding goal, to calcify the institution of slavery, and perpetuate a permanent slave class. Arguably, without slavery, the second amendment, would lack a raison d’etre. There is a through-line from the atrocities of the Atlantic slave trade, to the proliferation of guns in the US.

The phenomena of widespread gun violence, in the US, is of gargantuan proportions. It is tearing away at the fabric of society, with no let up or solution in sight.The rampant, flagrant, orgiastic bloodletting, caused by gun violence, is a sword of Damocles over the nation. Every needless death is a human tragedy, with appalling seen and unseen ripple effects.

In a fantasy world, I envision blood-red roses, strewn about and blooming, in the African soil, from where men, women, and children, were cruelly removed, at gun point, to exist and labour as human chattel, in North American slavery. Every rose bears witness to the personhood and dignity, of a human life; annihilated, root and branch, from African soil.

In further flights of fancy; in recognition of our shared, sacred humanity, my mind’s eye, captures blood-red roses, blossoming in US soil. Each, a memorial, to a victim of unjustified and indiscriminate, ghastly, gun violence.


My ode to victims, on both sides of the Atlantic:

Blood Roses

Roses, whisper of timeless, boundless, unending, eternity
Silky, soft, dewy, crimson petals, promise one enduring, passionate, love
Delicate, ethereal, other-worldly fragrance, lifts spirits, stirs hearts and transports minds
Alas! sharp, pointed, ugly, thorns pierce, tear tender flesh, spill blood, and torment
Bloody roses; oceans and aeons apart, yet forming one ghoulish, interwoven, dripping-wet tapestry
Grim offerings to countless, human tragedies of truncated, stolen, brutalised,  earthly paradise
Priceless tokens, testifying to myriad gun, -yoked lives, defiled, despoiled, and deflowered
A thornless, rose-carpeted, damask scented celestial stairway to heaven, awaits
Past, and future, innocent victims of grisly, hellish, gun violence
Every rose, an indelible bloodstain, and a solemn, true witness, to man’s inhumanity to man.

©2021 by Irene Fowler



Gun-gods blitz, mayhem ensues
Hell-fire pierces the peaceful, still air
Human and animal kingdoms upturned
Orgiastic netherworld sounds permeate
Choke heavenly-realm angelic cries
Bottomless-pit monstrosities unchained
Harmonious simplicity rent asunder
Gun powder over African villages
Wrests sons from mothers
Tears daughters from fathers
Every affected area a crime scene
Africa’s blood-soaked soil
Surrenders its best human specimens
Bloodlines terminated for all eternity
Humanity, kinship, familial love
Identity annihilated: personhood trashed
Guns, guns, and more, guns.


Human-gun-gods celebrate
Worship, venerate, idolize their handiwork
Revel and luxuriate in macabre killer-alchemy
Slavers, traders, masters, drivers
Coffers filled with treasures of darkness
Slave patrols hunt down escapees
Guns at the ready to terrify and re-kill
Human chattel sniffed, tracked, ambushed
Merciless gun-deities, hungry for human prey
Ahmaud Arbery, Trayvon Martins, Daunte Wright
Sacrificial offerings on their ruthless altar
Bloodied, shredded, shattered, lifeless
Guns, guns, and more, guns.


Sandy Hook, El Paso, Parkland, Orlando
Sutherland Springs, Las Vegas, Tree of Life
Frankenstein’s monster reigns supreme
Feeds insatiable lust for human carnage
Flaunts absolute, reprobate, godly power
In its wake, broken or hardened hearts
Destroying lives, decimating communities
A nation, rag-doll-like, in a tsunami of guns
Law makers exalt greed, depravity and death
Brooking neither dissent, nor debate
Contemptuous of sound reason and good faith
Guns do not kill, people do
A good gun can stop a bad gun
2nd amendment supersedes any Holy Writ
Set in stone: IN GUNS WE TRUST
Guns, guns, and more, guns.

©2021 by Irene Fowler



About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for over 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
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