Published on Academy of American Poets (

Lindos, Greece

Maybe silence adds to the pain
and maybe pain adds to the sea
and maybe the sea is only a reflection
of a ruin today
where the mind is unable to make out
how things used to be for us:
complete, with deities, a kind of 
order. Oh never mind the ATMs 
scattered throughout the medieval town
or the street art sprayed
into the air that says
Destroy what destroys you
But I destroy myself;
I destroy myself.


Copyright © 2018 by Sandra Simonds. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on December 24, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

About this Poem

“This poem is a response to the political street art and graffiti that I saw in Greece this past summer. The political street art slogan ‘Destroy what destroys you’ was unexpectedly Delphic in power insofar as it seemed to have the power to speak directly to the chaotic forces of emotions. This poem speaks to how we have internalized some of the oppressive structures of our times.”
—Sandra Simonds


Sandra Simonds

Sandra Simonds is the author of Orlando (Wave Books, 2018).

Date Published: 2018-12-24

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