a palindrome*

America, you Jerusalem reborn!
No profligate, old-world, ruined people, you.
Behold: peace. You’re principle without pain and dishonor.
Dishonor and pain without principle: your peace.
Behold, you people: ruined world!
Old, profligate. No reborn Jerusalem you, America.

*Distantly inspired by Yehuda Alharizi’s “Palindrome for a Patron” [12th or 13th century] as translated by Peter Cole and cited by Harold Bloom in the June 28 New York Review of Books.