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Fire behind the eyes

Mine enemy, well cursed and scorned
frail corpse askew and so adorned
in beggers cloths, cum uniform
was less a soldier ever born?

Scarlet spilled has gone to brown
the bullets spent that cut you down
have left a castle for the flies
and stole the fire behind your eyes.

Was heart, or mind that which inspires 
nocturnal transit through the wires
Love of country, or was it fear
of us, or those who led you here?

Your sacrificial consequence
so little now, so little hence
lies dead now just inside the fence
your body, and my innocence.

To justify the call to war
Mine enemy, I needed more;
more hatred, ugliness and dread
to justify what made you dead.

Some will say that history shows
there are no atheists in holes
on Flander's fields or Khe San's hills
but shrapnel cares not who it kills.

I know fate's a fickle lover,
with blistered hands I dig my cover,
as ever vigilant she tries 
to steal the fire behind my eyes.

Years from now when old and bent
I'll Rue the many days I've spent
the deeds from which I can't repent
as Fate's unwilling instrument.

And peace, I fear it only lies
behind the fire, behind the eyes.


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  1. Date: 1/12/2015 6:29:00 PM

    wow, what a powerful poem. Especially I love what you are saying in this line: but shrapnel cares not who it kills . .. a well thought out poem!