The Reverse Antigone

This is a poem about paying the price for prioritizing justice over rule of law—dislocation by truth-telling.

“The Reverse Antigone”

Given a choice between law and family,
she chose family and death. What loyalty.
But I have done the reverse Antigone.

Tho you could say I wanted only
what she wanted. Lonely birds,
not leading but leaving our herds.

Everyone must break away.
Under enough strain, no stone can stay.
The spirit spits, startles its demands.

Breathing justice, not a book of rules.
Messy story, not spouting stands.
Faithless lovers, not faultless fools.

Sure, I’d rather have a standing city.
I’d rather have a standing army.
Not this choice between truth and home.

But I, too, know the king’s decree.
And I’m going to bury
who I’m going to bury.