Valentine’s Day Massacre

—for Anne

—February 14, 2022: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declares he will attempt to invoke the federal Emergencies Act to disperse the Truckers’ Convoy, a black day in our country’s history

Ice Heart lo-res 

You machine-gunned the winter sky

’til it bled above our heads, threw us

the corpse of hope. The grand, failed exit

of an impotent boy-king, clutching

at hammers, backed hissing

into a corner. Your words slammed


into me like a football tackle—the sick

slo-mo of impact, the knotted guts

of long-distance impotence. And like any

victim of accident or outrage, the moist

February cold penetrated my bones,

my blithering bones; appetite gone

and nausea in its place

at Valentine’s dinner, still stunned and

weak as deer in the candleless night.


And there in the dizzy chaos—you,

my love, loyal as morning, looking

to be kind in some small,

immeasurable way, even if

this Day of Lovers arrives

in the season of liars, thieves

and killers. Your eyes—


a ridge holding me down, not

letting me go.


©2022 Sean Arthur Joyce


About seanarthurjoyce

I am a poet, journalist and author with a strong commitment to the environment and social justice. If anything, I have too many interests and too little time in a day to pursue them all. Film, poetry, literature, music, mythology, and history probably top the list. My musical interests lie firmly in rock and blues with a smattering of folk and world music. I consider myself lucky to have lived during the great flowering of modern rock music during its Golden Age in the late 1960s/early '70s. In poetry my major inspirations are Dylan Thomas, Rilke, Neruda and the early 20th century British/American poets: Auden, Eliot, Cummings. My preferred cinema includes the great French auteurs, Kirosawa, Orson Welles, and Film Noir. My preferred social causes are too numerous to mention but include banning GMOs, eliminating poverty (ha-ha), and a sane approach to forest conservation and resource extraction. Wish me—wish us all—luck on that one!
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2 Responses to Valentine’s Day Massacre

  1. annechampagne57 says:

    Whoa. Very powerful poem, my love. Thank you.

  2. wrcu2 says:

    My sixteen year old syndactyl cat, born with deformed tail and malformed tear ducts also passed away on Valentines Day. I awoke many mornings with her and her purr on my pillow. RIP Cinnamon my mini-kitty and my cold souled Canada as well.

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