To The Duty Bound

Soldier

Hand me your gun

Take my songs

Spread them on the battlefield

And engrave them on shrines of faith

 

I’ll take your hand grenades too

And give you tangerines to take home

 

Reach them

To the mother

Whose tears have dried on the kitchen counter

That has stopped boasting of warm food.

This boot looks rather mournful

What with its partner stolen by an interfering land mine

Take these slippers of hemp instead

Lay them out in front of the temple steps

 

Courier them to

Your father’s arthritic condition

 

Hand me the lump of metal

That hangs around your throat

There are people who better deserve to be dressed in stars.

 

Here’s a deal

In turn, I’ll let you taste moon light

From the pool of water

That hosts pageants of the night sky.

Pellets only make your pockets heavy,

Take instead these cashew nuts

And let not your willingness to close fingers

around promises

fall in proportion with their weight.

 

The soot suits not your face

And the work of red

Harangues the colour of those lips

That make the frayed photograph

In your worthless wallet

Worth more than the warehouses

You and I maintain.

I see now why you keep making trips to this free market

How you exchange:

A quintal of pride for an ounce of love

where you loosen yourself into the self-gratifying nature of a loss

that helps you forget that you are losing her.

 

Go back

Before the wedding pyre of an unchaste lover

Before the funeral pyre of an undead mother

Makes poverty a description for a state of undead, unrelated to wealth.

 

This apart,

Hasn’t anyone ever told you?

You don’t look so good in green.

 

Go Back

Go Forth

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