Shadow of the Host

Upon your friends list, leave an empty line
In memory of the voices stuck on mute,
Whose cause the imp and angel both malign —
Yet neither knows — yet neither needs refute.

Once statesmen spoke, and papers spread their words
To frame, in every soul, a fixed debate.
Now headless feeds writhe into forms absurd,
To mock, appeal, cajole, and obfuscate.

Where once the papers came by ones and twos,
And all the village knew what each decreed,
The screen hides hydra-headed multitudes
Behind a name that swears to every creed

And yet is silent where it matters most.
What choice, what balance, in the screaming host?

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