The men, in lines, tramp two by two,
forgetting all the women who
indulged them through a night of tricks
(their lips designed with crimson sticks,
their eyes a wild mascara mix)
and think instead on times ahead
when they'll be gone, their bodies dead
(some rotting slow', some mummified)
though once they were their mummy's pride.
Attired bright in uniforms,
they strew their bombs in desert storms -
like melting sands, the sky deforms
with darkness, death - and doomsday swarms
through ravished lands where fires warm
the corpses, cold and puriform.
Their eyes flash forward towards the backs
of lucky ones who have the knack
of never being in the way
of bursts of bullets as they stray
(effacing phantoms faraway)
and dodging doom's Redemption Day.
They're wishing for a foggy morn
or best of all to be unborn,
and peering down to mark the sway
of wings in webs while spiders prey,
they wonder when their time will come
and they can cease their fleeing from
the sights they've seen, the deeds they've done,
the life they've lost, the death they've won,
then muse a while upon the child
they killed today when they went wild,
and when they're finally reconciled
with broken bodies stacked and piled,
they ponder, does she have a kin
to curse them for their burning sin?
And if she does, will god reply
with tooth for tooth and eye for eye?
Or will her clan be mild and meek
and simply turn the other cheek?
2. MIDDAY MUSINGS
They're counting steps to pass the time
and puzzle if they'll reach their prime
or if instead they'll serve the worm
their carnal flesh and aching sperm
when soon, perhaps, they sleep in berth
provided by the chilling earth,
and fret about the fate they'll find
below the stones that slowly grind.
And once or twice will come to mind
a sultry smile they left behind
(the distant past - a tepid trace -
another time, another place) ,
reflected in the gray grimace
that paints a frightened fading face.
And on they trek through guilt and gloom
to track their own and others' doom
and soon they'llgrace another pool
with blood of other beings who'll
inhale no more the evening airs,
unlike the wily Functionaires
who brutalize the fighting men
and send them far away and then
(relaxed, unwound, with victories made)
confer with sword an accolade
on those who've lopped bowed heads, with blade,
so someone bent must turn a spade
to hack a hole which then is filled
with all the cloven bodies killed
then cloaked with clay or loamy dirt,
as if to hide the pain and hurt.
3. TEATIME INTROSPECTION
Amongst the many are the few
who maim and kill and think it's true
that purple war's a parlour game
when really they're submerged in shame
for crimes for which they are to blame
and can't expunge with searing flame
while plodding through an endless time,
or pealing bells with holy chime,
or posing in a paradigm
where paradox and riddle rhyme.
And when they die (as die they must) ,
forevermore their putrid dust,
still soaked with gore and carmine lust,
will conjure thoughts of cold disgust.
And even though torrential rain
(which tastes at times like cool champagne)
can wash away the scarlet stain
which soaks the sands of god's terrain,
it cannot ever cleanse the hands
that work the guns and burning brands,
or purge the throats that give commands
to him who never understands.
Nor can the raging hurricane
from blackened souls the white regain,
rescind the sins or void the banes
or loose the damned from Satan's chains
who line the pits of hell's domains.
When through the day to night they pass,
their eyes avoid the looking glass
displaying dim a pale phantasm
plunging deeper down a chasm,
surging through a blood orgasm,
smiling thin unveiled sarcasm
for the chances lost to taste
the many fruits that went to waste
when each was still a joyous lad,
who went to school and learned to add
and danced in rivers, barefoot clad,
attended church with mom and dad
(which tends the poor and cheers the sad) ,
to pray for good and curse the bad,
before, in war insanely mad,
he fought the fight (no Galahad)
by flinging flames and slashing throats,
immersing bods inmidnight moats
between the broken battered boats
where babes and booted bodies float,
and leaving bags of bones to bloat
in bullet-ridden overcoats,
and wondered if the goblins gloat
or spot (behind his eyes, the motes) ,
then strode away without a thought
that mortal lives had come to naught,
sedated by his conscience brought
to nothing more than dripping snot,
while Others sit upon a yacht
and pluck the eyes of fish They've caught,
for, when they die, fish seem to see
The Ones behind the tyranny
(with bellies round from gluttony)
in future dangling from a tree
(with leaves as black as ebony) ,
for that's, They fear, Their destiny.
5. MIDNIGHT DREAMS
At night the soldiers sometimes dream
of many things which make them scream,
floating down a gelid stream
with burning flesh and cold ice cream
upon their lips, which makes it seem
as though their salt they can't redeem
when looking back at bold extremes
of valiant warriors' victory schemes.
Or ofter yet,
they sometimes meet
a broken skull upon the street
with gaping eyes, its mouth replete
with swollen tongue that can't repeat
mere words of joy when lovers greet,
or yell aloud or indiscreet',
or talk about the grand deceit
of Those Who live on Easy Street,
Who plot, destroy and overeat,
while others bide beneath a sheet
on bed of steely cold concrete,
with final gift a flag or wreath
that soon will wither like their teeth
when once they're settled underneath
a mound of muck on mouldy heath,
to lurk in Limbo Land beneath.
And ever more before they wake,
appear quaint dreams not quite opaque,
upside down upon a lake
keeps popping up a pregnant Drake
who says "there must be some mistake,
I only have a bellyache",
while high above's a flying Snake,
(a sight to make a killer quake) .
She cries aloud "for mercy's sake
your foresight's blind, your wisdom's fake
the fragile bodies that you break,
impale or burn upon a stake,
then stack in layers like a cake,
reflect a lust that death can't slake".
And turquoise Turtles on the make
(though taking time to overtake,
each slurping down a chocolate shake)
rev up to plead "let us explain,
we think you men are all insane
with morals thin as cellophane;
for, peering through god's window pane,
we see quite clearly those you've slain,
enough to fill the Dim Domain
with blood and guts and tears and pain,
Chimeras of a frenzied brain."
A worn and weary weather vane
announces floods of claret rain
that forty days and nights sustain,
submerging mountains, raising Cain,
while flushing mankind's acid reign
down nature's evolution drain.
The Serpent hails a hydroplane
"because", she hissed, "we can't remain;
behind the hill, the atom's spark
has vaporized the palace park,
reduced to dust the Meadowlark
and nullified the Rainbow's arc".
And while the others hush and hark,
a feline Toad begins to bark
"This plane is certainly Boa's Ark.
Let's flee the Human hierarch,
forsake all Men to sate the Shark
which swim within the Waters Dark,
and purge all traces of the Mark
in Eden when we disembark."
The beasts, in lines, by twos embark.
The dreamers wake, they're staring, stark,
behind their eyes, a watermark.