Monday, December 26, 2022

Peter M. Gordon


Thomas Wayne, man in a hurry, didn’t fear
  hoodlums, rushed family through Crime Alley,
a shortcut. Joe Chill, waiting in the shadows
for rich pigeons, drew his .45, said, “I’ll take
those pearls the woman’s wearing.” Thomas
  thrust body between mugger and Martha,
his wife. Chill’s slug ripped through Thomas’
  chest and Martha’s heart, just another day 

at the office. Eight-year-old Bruce saw Chill rifle
  through father’s pockets, rip mother’s pearls off
her neck. Bruce spent Thomas’ fortune to train
body to physical peak, hone mind to knife-edge,

become The Batman. Chill, two-bit hood, changed the world.
For over eighty years Batman’s battled evil, inspired
billionaire crime fighters like Oliver Queen–Green Arrow;
Steven Grant–Moon Knight. Enabled acceptance of anger-
filled heroes-Wolverine, The Question, The Punisher.

In every generation Batman’s reinvented, from Adam
  West’s campy TV series to today’s Dark Knight.
Batman knows evil exists, innocents, die, but proves
when properly prepared, good can fight and win.

In the comics Batman told Chill he knew who murdered
  the Waynes. Chill, a boss now, laughed, until Batman
removed cowl, showed face of boy victim, now adult avenger.
   Fear stopped Chill’s heart. The Batman fights on.

Peter reads "Joe Chill":

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Peter confesses: "This poem began from a poetry prompt: Write something about the word "Chill." My mind immediately went to Joe Chill, the mugger that murdered Bruce Wayne's parents in Crime Alley, and launched the chain of events that led young Bruce into The Batman, and have been explored in many different reboots in the DC Universe and tv shows like "Gotham." In The Prince, Machiavelli writes that all great nations are the results of a great crime. If not for Joe Chill, Batman would not exist."

PETER M. GORDON is an award-winning poet with more than 100 poems published in various magazines and websites, and over one dozen poems on The Five-Two. He's authored two collections, Two Car Garage, and Let's Play Two: Poems About Baseball. Peter is a founder and current President of Orlando Area Poets, a chapter of the Florida State Poets Association. He teaches in Full Sail University's Film Production MFA program.

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