Category Archives: death

Typical American Weekend

This weekend has been a typical weekend

for the United States.

In Virginia,

a klan rally gathered around a statue

of one of their heroes,

carrying torches.

They even killed someone

and injured many.

 

A lot of Americans were at the beach

this weekend

enjoying summer

as it winds down.

Kids trying not to think

about the upcoming school year

where they will walk

through metal-detectors

into classrooms

where they will learn

nothing about history

and everything about patriotism

everything about obedience

and pledging allegiance

and nothing about critical though.

For many, this will happen while

they’re wearing their JROTC uniform,

the others will still learn these things,

and they will learn about teamwork

while on the football field

where they will get concussions.

Some of the others will run

cross-country instead

but they will all

be awe-struck

when they see the ribbons

and medals

the recruiter is wearing.

Many of them who,

at the beach

or in a pool this weekend

dread going back to school,

many of them will be

wearing real uniforms

next year

training to go fight

in many places

including Afghanistan

where, this weekend

US airstrikes killed

16 civilians

and for 16 years now

this has been happening

in Afghanistan.

 

For centuries now

men have been gathering

at rallies

around statues of their heroes

or gathering at rallies

around their heroes in the flesh

but on this typical American weekend

with American civilians

on beaches or in pools

and American kids dreading

going back to school

and Afghan civilians

under the rubble of hospitals

and schools,

this weekend

the hoods were removed

and pale faces

were illuminated

by tiki-torches

in Charlottesville

 

 

The Sun: ode to Japan

06 August 2017

 

2,272,147,200 seconds ago

37,869,120 minutes ago

631,152 hours ago

26,298 days ago

3,757 weeks ago

864 months ago

72 years ago…

the sun fell from the sky

over Hiroshima

rather, we dropped it.

Slightly less time has passed

since we dropped a second sun

from the sky

over Nagasaki.

 

I sit here this evening

drinking tea

as the sun sets

over the Pacific.

Amidst the Rubble: Ode to Mosul

What is a human life worth?

Some would say ‘priceless’

and others might agree

but there are dollar signs

and balance sheets

in mind

all the time

no matter what

they tell

your family.

One death is terrible

two are tragic

three start to free us

and four give us reason

for more war

where those numbers

will increase ten-fold

by lunch

and there is this

one-two punch

terrible and terrible

terrorizing together

dropping leaflets

telling civilians to flee

before bombs fall…

but they can see

ISIS snipers,

they can see

road blocks

and their city remains

locked

so theres nowhere

they can go

and this

we know

as we march on

with our plan

and flames are fanned

and streets long paved

with wreckage and rubble

are again in trouble

as mountains of death grow

and we throw stones,

show our muscles

and flex our flags

and your dead civilians

are worth less

than the body bags

that aren’t used

as they’re tossed

in the river,

buried in mass graves

or left to rot

amidst the rubble

blood

liberated from veins

arms

and legs

liberated from bodies

breath

liberated from lungs

thoughts

liberated from minds

thousands

liberated from life

a city

liberated

obliterated

decimated

devastated

suffocated

lost

left for dead

forgotten

amidst the rubble

 

Storm

it happened again last night

in my dreams

I was running through the attic

running through space and time

was running out

of my mind

finding clues under dusty boxes

and in old books

and I look out an open window

and there you are

but as you look up

the floorboards begin to rot

beneath my feet

and I’m falling

through space and time

just as our eyes meet

and I land in a graveyard

on a dead-end street

and I’m trapped

and space is closing in

and time is winding down

and I scream and shout

but no words come out

and I start to choke on doubt

and fear

and I’m all ears

but still can’t hear

the music playing

as the record spins

and the record skips

and the record skips

and the hour glass drips

seconds

minutes

hours

and the days drag on

and I’m in the basement

and its all gone

but the moldy boxes

filled with hurricane water

and lost memories

 

 

Falling Dreams

When I was a kid

I used to have dreams

that I was falling.

I never landed,

just kept on falling.

It was the same place,

the same dream.

I was on a farm somewhere

and there was a tractor

and there were animals,

cows and sheep

and there probably would have been goats

but I wasn’t really familiar with goats

when I was a kid

so they would never graze

through my dreams.

I would walk up to this stone wall

and look down

and it looked like the edge

of a flat earth,

it just kept…

on…

going…

down and down

but there was grass growing

and those sheep and cows grazing

and I would lean over the stone wall

and look down

and start to fall

and continue to fall

until I woke up.

I never hit the bottom.

I never saw the bottom.

I’m not entirely sure

that there even was

a bottom

because, somewhere on the way down

after passing the grazing cows, and sheep

I would wake up.

 

My grandfather

who we called ‘Poppy’

was a roofer

and it was falling

off a roof

at sixty-eight years old

that killed him.

Well, the pneumonia killed him

but the fall a month earlier

landed him in the hospital

in a medical-indused coma,

and then he got pneumonia

and thats what killed him.

I’m sure that he would have preferred 

dying from the fall.

 

I’m a farmer now

and the farm

is just a short walk away

from the edge of the earth

only, unlike in the dreams of my youth

now I can see the bottom.

A thousand or so feet

down a rocky cliff

is the pacific ocean.

There is no grass growing on the side

no cows or sheep,

but sometimes there are goats.

 

I have dreams now

where Poppy is falling

and I want to catch him

or at least break his fall

but my arms

and legs

won’t move.

I’m stuck

helplessly watching

him fall.

 

In the dreams I had as a kid,

the thing that I’m not sure about

is how I started falling in the first place.

I would be standing there at the stone wall

at the edge of the earth

and then,

all of a sudden

I’m passing sheep and cows

on my way down.

 

I wonder,

Did I

trip

or did I

               jump?