Saturday, August 8, 2009

Poetry Year, August 8th

There falling from the sky is death that is death that burns the eyes from light.
There raining from the close flock of planes buzz like locusts I've never heard,
There in marching columns come the bayonets of rape,
There engtangled in barbed spider's aerie the huddled herd of unpeople wait.
There in camps to be swarmed over by looter's tide,
There in villages to be sliced and slashed like so much meat.
There in coughing dins of disease and plague of woe
There in market meeting spattered to spots of pink mist,
There in dying dungeons hung to wall by wrists.
Here to where your lost souls go.

It is war, and let me think of it.
It is many tales, but only one story,
War is death, transmuted to golden glory,
only by the liars art,
in which every little liar does his part.
To send your sons to slaughter,
And make victims of your every daughter,
Each to be pounded in their way,
spread eagle in the gruesome splay.

There in small dark rooms with flag hung high,
The next apocalypse in words is drawn nigh.

It is war, and it is many tales,
but exactly one story.
How death transmutes to golden glory.

Set it in Hiroshima, Baghdad, Nanjing.
Lay the scene in Buchenwald, Kinshsa, or Flander's field,
call it war, or battle, or revolution by night,
it's all the impact of the rock, wielded by might.

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