Daily Archives: February 7, 2017

Weapon

I must demand a certain level
of willingness for war
from myself.

If I am to call myself
alive, I must be game
to fight for life,

to strike and cut as needed,
not only for myself
but for those uncertain

as to their worthiness
for life, for those reduced
from full to half or less.

I do not ask this 
of all.  I do not even ask this
of myself at all times;

there are moments when
I sit in darkness, afraid,
thinking only of pain,

of being carved
or shot or beaten; not so much
of death, as I am long ago

resigned to that and just wise enough
not to believe I am destined to be
the first immortal. There are moments

when even a shrunken freedom
seems too precious
to lose, and I sit

and hoard my selfish life;
then comes clarity
that spites my fear:

I was born a weapon,
there are wars 
worth fighting,

and the drum I hear
isn’t my heart,
is not even inside me.


Last Rites

You are prey, my country; 

prey for an Animal that seeks to eat the remaining vigor of your aging heart, that wishes to rip and expose all the rich evil that supports it from underneath;

prey for a Beast that will come on a weeknight before another day of a job you keep because it’s mildly OK, doesn’t tax you too much, and pays well enough to stave off cold, sickness, starvation, and nothing else; 

prey for the maw of a great bat-shit of a Monster looming above you with nothing but impersonal, perfected, gluttonous need;

prey for a flag-wrapped Vampire seeking aristocratic juice; flattering you into nobility, then sucking you dry.

Your body
will follow your core being
into that crimson mouth. 

Every sin of your past 
will be a flavor 
on its tongue.

You will be 
fulfilled as the perfect food
for the Last Meal.

 

Consumed

Was a broken stick
in a scared boy’s grip

as he used my point
to ward off a bully.

A poor weapon, brittle and weak,
available, close at hand;

did my best to help. He got away.
My best was barely enough.

Was a sign
in a marcher’s grasp,

streaked with runny ink
in a storm.

When the troops began
to fire, was tossed 

in defiance
toward armed and armored men;

was just enough distraction
to let my bearer get away.

Was firewood, kindling,
one scrap in a heap

near a homeless family’s 
small fire. Somehow

stayed dry enough
to help light a new blaze

after a drenching rain, then
was consumed and forgotten.

Have let myself be used
often, as often as possible,

but only when I thought
I could be of service

to something larger
than my poor self.

Was never much 
on being noticed

or praised or exalted. Tried
to leave that for those I served.

Enough that 
I did my small part.

Enough to have done
something to assist.