To the lawmakers

To the lawmakers

You cast your thoughts and prayers

            into the graves of our children.

Withered as soon as the flowers,

as soon out of sight and touch.

My people don’t use flowers.

How many parents

pause each night over beds made empty?

Don’t bring your flowers

            to our children’s graves.

Don’t bring your speeches.

Bring the cold, enduring stones of


Bring laws.

Pile them up,

until there are enough.

They will never be enough.

Make a marker

that will endure.

Make of their memories,

            a blessing.

            Not a precedent.

Vera Broekhuysen, May 24, 2022. After Texas.